Seika Lee was born in Japan where she enjoyed various handicraft since her childhood. With her husband, she later moved to California where she started her career as a patchwork artist, creating different pieces of Bojagi (traditional Korean patchwork) and hosting Bojagi classes at Stanford University. In 2019, she is planning to move to Switzerland and will continue her career as a patchwork artist there.
<Meeting with patchwork>
Seika enjoyed sewing since her childhood. She was deeply moved as a high school student when she saw Bojagi for the first time at a museum. It was simple in construction yet carried a strong presence. It immediately struck something in her, leaving a strong impression. Inspired, she made her first Bojagi with her mother at home.<Self-taught>
Seika obtained most of her knowledge about Bojagi from watching DVDs and reading books. Occasionally, she also attended one-day seminars. Whenever possible, she visited Bojagi exhibits which she found a great opportunity to learn more about Bojagi as well.<Moving to the US and start as a patchwork artist>
After moving to the United States, making Bojagi helped Seika through rough times. When she was feeling homesick, making Bojagi helped her staying strong. Gently running her hands through the soft fabrics of ramie and silk, being surrounded in the warmth of each color, and sewing them together with a needle one stitch at a time always made her feel calm and optimistic.Making Bojagi also deepened her friendships, gave her opportunities to meet new people, and made her life more colorful. In the process of thinking about her future of making Bojagi, she was able to gain a better understanding of herself and her values. This is the start of her career as a patchwork artist.<Hosting Bojagi classes at Stanford University>
Driven by her desire to share the wonderfulness of Bojagi and the enjoyment of patchwork with as many people as possible, Seika decided to host a 5-week Bojagi class at Stanford University. Due to its popularity she subsequently hosted an additional 1-day seminar. In total, 14 students participated in her classes. Through teaching, she was able to gain a deeper understanding of Bojagi, making it a very fruitful experience. <Challenge to make Bojagi as art>
Seika believes that Bojagi can be a form of art and not just wrapping cloth or something for practical use since it can speak to people’s heart through its various designs and combinations of fabric and patchwork.Therefore, her goal is to make Bojagi that can connect with people at a deep level and to purse new combinations of fabrics and colors.<Her dream>
Seika’s dream is to open her own classroom while continuing to hone her techniques. She wants to create a space where various people can communicate and enjoy their lives. As part of that, she wants to create a system that makes learning Bojagi easy for children, people in hospitals, and people with disabilities.