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Artist///Painter Alexa Lim

Her Natural State Painter returns to passion STORY AND PHOTO BY JOY WHITE

A landscape painting of flamingos milling in wetlands sits in her Tamuning studio waiting to be finished. She carefully considers what she wants to add. She paints a lone woman sitting on a patch of land in the distance. The human figure helps the audience connect with the piece, she says, but the work is not about the woman.

“Color Map” (2015) Acrylic on canvas

Alexa K. Lim in her Tamuning studio. Lim is returning to her lifelong passion for art.

“Beach Ball in the Pool” (2015) Acrylic on canvas

“The focus is not on the person, but on how small we are in nature, I suppose,” says Alexa K. Lim, a painter recently returned to her craft. Lim decides the piece needs more contrast, a common theme in her work, and will return to the piece later. Lim paints in acrylic and oil and dabbles in photography and filmmaking. Being a painter was the only career she ever considered. People often told her that she would not be able to make a good living as an artist unless she wanted to be an art teacher. But that didn’t dissuade her. She studied art in college, attaining her master’s in fine arts from the University of Massachusetts. She has exhibited her work at shows in New York; Austin, Texas; and Korea. After grad school, she helped her husband operate his dental clinic, then moved to Korea due to family obligations. “I eventually slipped away from art,” Lim says. Lim and her husband then moved to Saipan briefly, where they experienced a tropical environment for the first time. Lim was inspired by the colors and brightness of the island. She gained much inspiration from Sugar Dock, photographing and filming the waves and the surrounding area. “I really loved the ocean and the colors. Nature brings

you back to your natural state of self,” she says. “You can’t help it if you’re naturally drawn to it. I see color and light and have a desire to express it somehow.” Now painting is her first priority. Second priorities are important, too, she says. “But a lot of the time in life you don’t get to do your second priority,” she says. Lim gets inspiration from her surroundings and her love for film and literature. She takes photos, some of which stand alone as works of arts and others serve as inspiration for a painting. She likes to capture color in her work, especially bright colors, because people tend to forget how vibrant colors can be, she says. Lim also likes to incorporate geometric shapes and architecture in her paintings. Her goal is to develop her body of work. She plans to display her paintings at the CAHA gallery next July.

Lim would like to work with children to help expose them to the possibilities of art and is open to collaborating with other artists, including musicians. Her work can be viewed at and she can be reached at


Birds (2015) Acrylic on canvas

R&R Pacific - August/September 2017  

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