Korean traditional folk dancers, shamans, the sun, the moon, and a traditional wedding are all surrounding the central stone-like figure, which is a depiction of the artist herself in struggle. The top mandala is drawn from Korean Buddhist temple architecture overlooking the chaos below, representing balance and peace. Coexistence is about the artist's struggle for a happy marriage, healing from wounds, and living with han - the Korean cultural inherent trait of a sense of unresolved conflict.

- Lauren Chai


Oil painting on paper

Varnished and Ready to frame

Signed on back

35.75" h x 24" w 
0 lbs. 10 oz.



Lauren Chai
Honolulu, Hawaii

Getting to Know Lauren

Lauren Chai is known for contrasting her traditional Korean upbringing with her modern American life and including a personal story or cultural narrative to accompany each piece. As the first in her family born in America, she was raised by her South Korean grandparents in Hawaii. She moved across the Pacific to San Francisco to study at the Academy of Art University. After some time following the technique-based curriculum, Lauren says she relished breaking the rules and mixing abstract elements into the work. Her current series places side by side traditional elements, such as Korean folk dancers and Buddhist temple architecture, and modern elements, such her own marriage or a portrait of fashion designer Creepy Yeha. In fact, most of her models are personally connected to the artist, so Lauren knows their stories and captures the essence of who they are beyond their Asian American heritage. She explains that her works are "a reflection of my traditional upbringing in chaos with my modern life as well as the clash of North and South Korea. All pieces of one person, of one Korea." She has been featured in NBC News, KBS World Radio, Houston NPR, and the Honolulu Star Bulletin.