My large-format drawings and paintings are the visual terminus of a much longer method, and perhaps their extravisual meaning is to be found in the archeology of their making: Driven by a desire to first experience as manifest reality the symbolic content of my images, my process starts with performances staged in my studio, where my models and I make pitiful attempts at acrobatic exercises: We walk the tight rope (poorly), strenuously climb wires suspended from the ceiling, balance on balls and twist our pale and puckered bodies into a myriad of uncomfortable positions. It is important that this initial physical experience, ripe with the potential for injuries and skin-against-skin contact, lives on in the final pieces, as I strive to convey a bodily awareness of the paradox of strength and vulnerability that is the human condition.
Born in Norway, Kjøk left her tiny mountain village at 16 years of age. She went on to live and study in Paris, Vienna, Medellín, and a number of U.S. cities, earning three graduate degrees on her way. Virtually self-taught in artistic techniques, she moved to New York City for an MFA in Painting at Parsons School of Design in 1998,and has since then lived and worked in an artist collective in Brooklyn, NYC.
An avid drawer all her life, Kjøk participated in her first professional exhibition as a teenager. To date, her work has been featured in 80+ group shows worldwide. She has had seven solo exhibits in museums, galleries and artist-run spaces in the US and Europe, most recently in Berlin in 2009. Last September, her drawings were featured in a two-person show at Bill Hodges Gallery in Uptown Manhattan. Sol's work is represented in museums and other public collections in the US and Europe and internationally reviewed.