Pink Gives Me the Blues

February 26, 2008 at 11:01 am 1 comment

Perhaps you saw that Forest Hill’s JeongMee Yoon was profiled in last weekend’s New York Times for her photo show “The Pink and Blue Project,” which will be showing March 3 to April 26 at the Jenkins Johnson Gallery in Chelsea. It’s a great review, and her photographs will indeed elicit a smile.

The inspiration for JeongMee Yoon’s photographic project was her 5-year-old daughter, Seowoo, who loved things pink. As a setting for a portrait, Ms. Yoon assembled all of her daughter’s pink possessions — stuffed animals, dolls, plastic toys, books, clothes, jewelry, makeup and school supplies — into an orderly display. Seowoo’s bedroom was transformed into a pink kingdom for a child queen….

The themes of gender difference and compulsive shopping scream out from these portraits, but more subtle themes are also apparent. The children, both Asian and non-Asian, collect toys that are both Asian and non-Asian: “Hello Kitty” and anime action figures appear as often as Barbie and Superman. Mass-produced items sit beside family keepsakes — the traditional Korean dress called the hanbok or a hand-me-down, smocked party dress.

Children of all ages are hooked on pink and blue, a trend ensured by parents who begin collecting for sons and daughters when they are infants. The project touches raw cultural nerves while delighting the eye and coercing a smile.


I have to admit, though, that I am concerned about what is going on in little Seowoo’s bedroom, and all the kids who potentially could fill a room like this. They deserve better than a monochromatic childhood, and really, it’s such an easy fix. My recommendation is that parents with this problem should refer to the vast array of Pantone colors, many of which play nicely for both teams. Start by admitting your fear of other colors, which by now has been transferred to your child. Here’s a little mantra to begin the process of color-conversion therapy: All kids look good in all blues, yellows, greens, and browns, and even some shades of pink and purple.

Remember: the first step is the hardest.


Entry filed under: for small kids, Forest Hills, parenting, Queens, Rant, the arts, timely topic.

Attn. Musicians: The Hills Are Alive… Humor

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Anne  |  February 26, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    Of interest is that Pantone announced the color of the year for 2008 to be iris, a purplish blue; it’s the sort of shade you might get by mixing pink and blue.


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