Kiwha Lee Blocman is a painter based in New York City and Singapore. Her work speaks to visual perception and human behavior while questioning what painting is in the 21st century and the cultural perceptions it can challenge in an increasingly siloed world. Nominated for the Sovereign Asian Art Prize in 2018, she has exhibited at Ortega y Gasset Projects (curated by Young Space and Far x Wide), Fergus McCaffrey, Leroy Neiman Gallery, 205 Hudson Gallery, Chan+Hori Gallery among others. Her work has been featured in publications like Vulture, The Business Times, Harper's BAZAAR Art, and Asian Art News. Kiwha was selected by the Visual Arts Development Association for the 'Untapped' series as one of ten artists in Singapore to discover in 2016 and was also a finalist for the Harper's Bazaar Art Prize 2016. She has held residency at Chautauqua Institution in 2016 (New York) and the NPE Art Residency in 2018 (Singapore). Kiwha attended Columbia University in 2015 for post-baccalaureate studies in advanced painting and is currently working towards her MFA in Studio Art (Painting) at Hunter College in New York City.
Having first attended UNSW College of Fine Arts then the University of Technology Sydney, her background holds a unique mix of visual-social, art historical and technical fluidity. Kiwha headed up Apple's creative strategy for Japan as an original team member of TBWA\Media Arts Lab (Apple's California-based confidential creative incubator) during the lead up to 2007's launch of the iPhone. Having tasted firsthand what it is to help change culture, Kiwha today channels the empathy and knowledge developed over a lifetime of living as a culture miner—keenly interested in philosophy, social anthropology and brain science to explore the shapes of identity, time and inequality. Influenced by her love of travel and mission to challenge arbitrary boundaries, Kiwha founded and curated the influential artspace, THE FLAT, from 2013-2018 in Singapore. The daughter of an urban planner academic and a novelist, Kiwha was born in Seoul and raised on four continents, namely in the cities of New York, Sydney, Seoul, Boston and London.