Kim Chong-Hak was born in 1937 at Sinuiju. He majored in painting at Seoul National University, whereupon he chose the path of abstract art in the midst of volatile opposition between abstract and conceptual art. He actively created work during his stays in the US and Japan, and he began attending meetings at 'Art that has become the slave of ideology'. After his return, it was 1979 when the artist decided to leave Seoul for Sokcho from his dissatisfaction in life and in hopes of pursuing his painting career. At this point in time, the artist thought more of death than life, and spent a year without seeing or reading anything. With the help of an acquaintance, Kim moved to Sulak mountain, where nature cured the artist. The spontaneous bloom of flowers was a shock of colour to the artist: 'Pasqueflower, Rosa rugosa, Wild rose, Evening primrose…' He began painting flowers and mountains, rekindling his ambitions of the past: 'I started looking at things again, everything looked anew'. He started feeling the ‘Artist’s purpose and responsibility’ to paint what he saw. Across 20 years, the artist developed a unique painting style so typical, one may think that it seemed quite ordinary. However, Kim reached a stage where he paints freely, as he has once stated: 'The purpose of painting is to be free'.
In Kim's own words, 'The reason in choosing flowers as a motif was that it withdrew from the image of a degenerate artist.' During the 1970 and 1980s, the artists society of Korea was dominated by subjects such as solemnness, sublimeness, and the value of struggle. However, flowers were always a friendly and familiar subject motif for artists, and still persists to be so in the present. Individual artists would have different reasons for painting flowers, but the main reason that flowers continue to remain as a topic un-withered among artists is due to their characteristics of primitive beauty, eros, and death. This is why new appearances of flowers occur with each epoch. Kim's flowers are 'not normal flowers that blossom, but flowers that structurally bloom on a screen' as he himself has said, the combination of the flowers of realities and the conceptual flower are considered to be a ‘fantasy’ that has blossomed through the medium of painting.