About the Artist:Caitlin Leonard is a first-generation, native-born Korean American interested in diversity and inclusion, normalizing queerness, and comics.
Instagram: @katleonardoart @peachxclover
WEBTOON: Peach x Clover
Tapas: Peach x Clover
Mixed Media, Spring 2020, two 32" x 24" framed prints
Go Back to Where You Came From
Digital Print, Spring 2020, 28 8.5" x 11" prints
잘먹겠습니다 (Thank You for the Meal)
Mixed Media, Spring 2020, two 20" x 48" framed prints
Peach x Clover
Digital Print, Fall 2019 - Present, 8" x 8" square prints in 64" x 64" square grid
For my Seo works, I wanted to represent the rich history of my family’s upbringing and immigration to the United States from Korea. Showcased here are only a fraction of their stories that I one day hope to accumulate into a graphic memoir:
Go Back to Where You Came From tells the story of two truths. One version is my memory of my aunt telling me about her experience being pulled over by a racist cop in her youth. The second is my aunt retelling me her story meant to be described with determination and confidence.
Seoul is a diptych depicting my grandfather in Seoul, Korea. He first saw the city after it was bombed when he was a war refugee. In 2019, he was able to return to see the cityscape it transformed into.
잘 먹겠습니다 (Thank You For The Meal) is a series of images depicting traditional Korean dishes that my family and I often share. The traditional food made so far away from its origins brings a sense of diaspora that I will never truly understand.
I have returned to my roots in drawing and combined my techniques with digital programs to hybridize and push my artmaking practice to its fullest potential. I start with hand-drawn lines where I am able to have more control over my gestures and that are digitally irreplicable. I then scan the images, manipulate the colors, and build on top of and beneath the original image in a novel way that I would be unable to through traditional artmaking means. This hybrid technique has streamlined my process and is most evident in the 잘 먹겠습니다 (Thank You For The Meal) images and Seoul diptych.
My online Peach x Clover series is drawn from my life experiences and attempts to normalize queer love in an overdetermined, universally understood way. These pieces are best described as digital, light-hearted, slice-of-life comics. I was free to explore color through vibrant four-panel pages and emotive avatars made with thick, sketchy lines. This collection of work was made in conjunction with my ongoing comic and cartoon-based research focusing on the accessibility of comics in the growing digital age.
As a lesbian, first-generation, native-born Asian-American, I am forever grateful for being surrounded by understanding and compassionate people. I make my work to not only raise stakes in universalizing diversity and inclusion but also to cultivate a restoration of agency by representing my family and minority groups. “If not me, then who? If not now, then when?”