Born in South Korea, Gabby Chu spent her adolescence living in Southeast Asia, dividing her time between Cambodia and Vietnam before her studies took her to Australia. Spending her time exposed to a variety of cultures and traditions from an early age helped to shape a world view that was open to a broad spectrum of human experience and struggle.
Upon completing her studies in Australia, Gabby returned to Korea where she explored her creative impulses more fully. Working as a tattoo artist Gabby also pursued a variety of other mediums; acrylic paint, ink, textile and ceramic. During this time, she had the privilege to study under Jang Dong Lee and his wife, whom she credits with expanding her understanding of the fundamental differences in Eastern and Western art.
Also, with the huge help of Joo Yeong Yang, Gabby found her most profound artistic expression on a pilgrimage to Tongdosa. Under the tutelage of the Buddhist monk Seongpa she was initiated in the tradition of Ottchil.
Gabby’s creative expression draws from a foundation of Asian traditional practices including Minhwa, Ukiyo-e in combination with western surrealism and symbolism. It is a weave of these influences that informs a style which she describes it as ‘Abstract figurative paintings’.
Gabby Chu’s work as a tattoo artist has enabled her to work in many different cities across Europe, Asia, and North America. Working with people from all walks of life and listening to their stories, Gabby observed a number of patterns and similarities in people’s experience and the conflicts within their lives that existed regardless of where people came from or who they were. Touched by so many stories that she has heard, and the things she has been through personally, she decided to express these stories through her art.
With a vision to unite Eastern and Western philosophies and traditions through creative expressions, the works are shown through the desire. The desire to validate the human struggles and to display its beauty. Gabby Chu wishes to share with her audience the light that exists in all of us, and the ability to push beyond self-imposed limits.