With more than half a million followers on Instagram, Henn Kim is one of the most popular illustrators on the platform. And it’s not a surprise. Her work is easy to relate to, exploring the complex feelings that come with romance: sorrow, broken hearts, fantasy and longing.
She describes her illustrations as “beautiful dark twisted fantasies.” And they are. She depicts powerful stories using just black and white lines and placing and juxtaposing objects in unusual ways.
Some themes reappear, such as nature, space, relationships and hazy depictions of young women. Henn’s ability to capture complicated emotions in her illustrations, add to their appeal.
She effortlessly mixes familiarity with surreality by using daily objects in a metaphorical sense, such as books, flowers and lamps. For example, there’s the girl sitting in a disproportionally large piece of literature, looking out at an infinite universe. And we see two people in an intimate embrace, trapped in an hourglass, their time as a couple doomed to pass. Or the couple who is torn apart by mind and matters of the heart.
The total of Henn’s work makes a surrealistic but serene whole, and we can see why the artist is so immensely popular. Her pieces are like visual poetry – they are vulnerable, sweet yet complicated love stories that anyone can relate to.