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Fall 2014 Competition:


art that reveals hidden stories and the duality of all things

2nd Place Winner

Medium:  Oil on Canvas
Size:      36in x 24in
Price:     400 usd

artist statement

My work provides an alternative view of some of the most controversial issues in our society. In my series, Forgiven, I unveil an unconventional interpretation of the death penalty. By portraying death row prisoners as children, I reveal layers of their past virtue. The image of childhood innocence is juxtaposed with criminal activity and tragic fate, represented by their last words. 

I begin by selecting images of children to represent the prisoner. From these images, I draw rough sketches. The paintings are then improvised. I allow the natural flow of the brush and my mood to set the outcomes. The randomness denotes life and its unpredictability. The background, on the other hand, is planned and structured like the intentions of the criminal justice system. Colors and composition are carefully considered before reaching a final decision.

Forgiven is based on restorative justice, an alternative approach in which criminals apologize to those they’ve harmed and ask for forgiveness. Through Forgiven I create a dialogue about death row inmates, their childhood, their crimes, and their destiny. By examining the prisoners’ lives, circumstances, and final moments, I invite viewers to create new choices on how they feel about death row inmates and their execution. I encourage viewers to question their opinion and reexamine their grasp on the circumstances surrounding the death sentence.

artist bio

Jennifer Lugris Park is a multicultural (Korean, Uruguayan, American, and Spanish) oil painter. She paints to raise awareness of human rights abuses and make a difference. 10% of her sales are donated to Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights, an organization which helps North Korean refugees. She currently resides in Oakland, California.


2016   Post Baccalaureate in Visual Arts (pending), University of California, Berkeley

2009   Bachelor of Arts, Rutgers University


Group Exhibitions

2015   Enigma, Firehouse Art Collective: The Lottie Rose House, Oakland, CA

2015   A Portrait in Diversity: Portrait/Self-Portrait Show, Studio One Art Center, Oakland, CA

2015   Pancakes & Booze Art Show, Minna Gallery, San Francisco, CA

2015   Dimensions: The Depth of Intent, DBA 256 Gallery Wine Bar, Pomona, CA

2014   Art & Social Change, LH Horton Junior Gallery, Stockton, CA

2014   Spring Semester Show, Merritt College, Oakland, CA

2014   Pacha Mama, Private Residence, Oakland, CA

2014   Compassion, Private residence, Alhambra, CA

2013   Extreme Art Show, Glendora, CA 

2013   Art Emerging, Huntington Beach Art Walk, Huntington Beach, CA

2013   The Art of Shaping, Huntington Beach Art Walk, Huntington Beach, CA 

2013   Entropy, Second Floor Restaurant and Gallery, Huntington Beach, CA 

2012   On Tour Photography, Alfa Art Gallery, New Brunswick, NJ 


Exhibitions Curated                                             

2014   Pacha Mama: Fundraising Exhibition for Save the Redwoods, Private Residence, Oakland, CA

2014   Compassion: Fundraising Exhibition for UNICEF for Typhoon Haiyan Victims in the Philippines, Private residence, Alhambra, CA


Esmee Xavier, "Oil on acrylic for change: Alhambra art show to raise money for Typhoon Haiyan victims," Alhambra Source, access date: January 16, 2014

Professional Organization
Firehouse Art Collective, Berkeley, CA


Jennifer Lugris

jennifer lugris park
Oakland, California [USA]

art scene today Q & A

Q: Where do you see yourself in the art scene today?
A: I see myself as an emerging political artist who paints to raise awareness on human rights abuses. I feel that I am following in the footsteps of contemporary artists such as Sue Coe, Jerome Witkin, and Marion Wilson. Through my work, I encourage the audience to question their opinion and reexamine their grasp on controversial issues such as the death penalty. 
Q: What is in your inspiration?
A:  I once read that Pablo Picasso’s “Guernica” was the last painting to influence the public opinion and change the political discourse. I am inspired by the need to challenge that belief. I believe that art should play a large role in how we view politics and popular culture. It should be used to challenge the public opinion and cause people to question their belief systems. As an artist, I feel it is my duty to speak up against social norms that violate human rights. Through my series “Forgiven”, I am creating a dialogue about death row inmates, their childhood, their crimes, and their destiny.
Q: What are your challenges?
A:  My work can be very heavy, emotionally. Sometimes I need to take a break from it to stay balanced.  
Q: How did you/do you choose your medium?
A: When I started painting it was with oil paints. I love working with them and have trouble wanting to try anything else.  
Q: Which artist has influenced you the most?
A: Francisco Goya. 

 other work by the artist



Fire Beneath the Ice-View Exhibition