Local Fine Artist is Passing the Baton

February 3, 2012

La Mesa Artist Discusses Her Work


Elena Sonbok Lee,Art and Light Gallery,Rice Paper Painting,Korean American Artist

Elena Sonbok Lee Rice Paper Painting entitled DSC-6048

Artist Elena Sonbok Lee of Art and Light Gallery in La Mesa, defies some of the stereotypes of the successful artist.  The universe apparently does not revolve around her…kind of cool.  Though she is quite accomplished, including among her artistic achievements, work as the Art Director and contracting artist of The Human Anatomy Exhibit in the Creation and Earth Museum in Santee California, Miss Lee has a passion for developing other artists.  Elena is a teacher.

Giving Back to the Community

While Miss Lee is quite active in showing her own work at a variety of venues.  This weekend some of her paintings will be featured at a fundraiser at the Fairbanks Ranch Country Club.  She is not only excited about expressing her own voice in painting, drawing, and ceramics, but Elena feels a deep calling to help aspiring artists develop both their own vision and discipline.

La Mesa Artist,Korean,Seoul Native,Painter,Ceramicist

Elena Sonbok Lee

I asked Ms. Lee about her students, who range in age from four to sixty years of age.  I thought she had some interesting things to say.  Her training at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, where she earned an MFA, taught her the importance of developing both the two and three-dimensional awareness.  Artists need to develop this regardless of which medium they work in.  Early exposure to art helps youngsters develop their right brain skills.

Classes at the Gallery

It is unfortunate that schools are cutting arts and music from their curriculums.  Ms. Lee makes a good case for remedial exposure to art and music through extracurricular classes.  Elena provides lessons in the back room at her gallery.  Her son, who is eleven, is developing his skills in music.

Elena Sonbok Lee,Art and LIght Gallery,La Mesa,Rice Paper Painting

Rice Paper Painting Nine

Elena used rice paper in both paintings, a material native to Korea where she was born.  Her father was a calligrapher and the use of rice paper resonates deeply with her family and asian roots.

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