Grace Kim

Artistic Discipline: Film/Video
Category: Brooklyn Arts Fund
Grant Year: 2020
Location: Bedford-Stuyvesant

Grace Kim is a Korean-American filmmaker who uses surrealist and absurdist premises to draw metaphors for how human beings experience and cope with loss and isolation. These surreal/absurd premises emphasize the universality of human experiences by plummeting the audience into otherworldly circumstances with relatable and sympathetic characters. Her ultimate pursuit in this type of filmmaking is to use film as a vehicle for sowing empathy — if one can find themselves able to resonate with say, the heartbreak of a woman in love with her own hand, then could human empathy not transcend the arbitrary borders of race, nationality, and beyond?

“Fissura” is an independent, experimental dance film shot on 16mm film with an entirely Brooklyn-based cast and crew. The film itself follows the trajectory of a failing relationship between a Seamstress and her own Right Hand. The various stages of their relationship is revealed in the fabrics and garments of the clothes around them, and as their romance unravels, the film culminates in a dreamy dance sequence. Using the metaphor of a sentient hand and its relationship with the Seamstress, the film seeks to hold up a crooked looking glass at our own irreparable relationships. When do people first come to recognize that uncrossable fissure between ourselves and the ones they thought of as their own? How do they cope with the knowledge that what they thought belonged to them is no longer? In the vein of the simultaneously heart-wrenching and comic anecdotes preserved in the Museum of Broken Relationships in Los Angeles, the project seeks to explore the idea of shared grief and collective heartbreak.