When I first stumbled across Mimi’s weavings I stared at them for 20 minutes trying to process all the work that went into making them. We’ve become friends in the year or so since then but I still don’t I understand how she does it. She is one of my favourite artists working today and I wanted to share some of things she’s been making with her partner Brian, under the name Brook&Lyn.
Interview with Mimi Jung of Brook&Lyn
Jeff Hamada: Your dog, Sunday, is so cute.
Mimi Jung: Sunday has a bellybutton. I swear.
J: My dream is to drop everything and travel around the world eating things. When I get to LA to visit you guys, where should we go eat?
M: If I didn’t have the world’s most sensitive stomach I would join you. Ham Ji Pak is a small, no-fuss Korean restaurant that specializes in marinated pork bbq. Their potato stew is to die for. CaCao Mexicatessen has the best duck tacos, and Sapp Coffee Shop makes the most delicious jade noodles with real crab meat.
J: Ooh all those things sound so good! I know you like to cook, what kinda things have you been making at home lately? The Turkey Dumplings you posted awhile ago looked delicious.
M: These days I’m afraid cooking isn’t a big priority due to time. Luckily we get weekly “farm fresh to you” deliveries which is keeping us relatively healthy. What’s in the box dictates what I cook for the week.
J: What’s the story behind the name, Brook&Lyn?
M: The idea started as a two-sided zine focusing on art and fashion, but it never took off due to funding. Since then Brook&Lyn has taken many forms. We often get asked if my name is “Brook” and if Brian is “Lyn”. Thankfully (or sadly?) that is not the case.
J: I know you’re moving away a bit from the jewelry and focusing more on your own art. Can you talk a little bit about your desire to explore photography, and make art objects?
M: I come from a fine arts background, so being part of the fashion world was sort of a fluke. I’ve enjoyed learning about jewelry and growing as a designer over the last few years, but getting back to my roots was always the plan.
J: What’s the experience of working on a weaving like for you? Maybe not so much what you’re doing technically, but perhaps what you think about while you’re doing it.
M: I can’t multi-task when weaving. I think it’s like meditating. I have a general idea of where to take the design of the weaving, but since each weft takes a tremendous amount of time and patience, I can’t really get ahead of myself. It’s best to zone out and remain peaceful until I get to my next color block.
J: Is the whole weaving pre-planned from the start or do you have more of a freestyle approach?
M: I like to mix it up. If I’m doing a large scale weaving then it’s important to have a general idea of the composition sine each section will take days to finish. For the smaller weavings most of the time I like to keep it open and let the process lead the way.
J: Tell me about your partner Brian’s work. I’ve seen on your Instagram (@brookandlyn) that he builds your looms for you, is wood work his specialty?
M: Brian’s background is in art direction. It took me six months to convince him to leave advertising to pursue his own projects. I really believe that if you are passionate about what you create then the money will follow. And that’s been the case since we started. He finally made the jump and joined Brook&Lyn two-and-a-half years ago.
J: In what ways are you two the same?
M: His new sense of freedom threw him for a while, but now we’re on the exact same path. His most recent interest is woodworking. He has the type of personality that gets obsessed with one thing, I’m the complete opposite. I tend to be interested in 50 things at once. He has no formal training in woodworking, but I’m so amazed at how fluent he has become. We’re not trust fund kids, we’re not independently wealthy, we work hard doing what we love and figured it out.
M: We’re showing this sculpture at Parachute Market. The show takes place in the arts district, LA, and runs from 9/21 to 9/22.
J: I usually end interviews by asking about the last realization you had, could be big or small.
M: Small or big realization, for the first time I feel as though my multiple interests aren’t seen as a lack of focus, but a body of work.
This last image is a piece Mimi made for Levi’s out of scrap denim, it is her first weaving made using fabric and will be hung at their concept stores.
See more of Mimi and Brian’s work: