After studying at the Marseille-Mediterranean School of Art and Design (INSEAMM), Karine trained as an upholsterer where she developed a passion for textiles. She then began her apprenticeship as a self-taught weaver in 2014, before deciding, in 2017, to design her own textiles in the form of garments.
In the same year she won the first prize in Creation category for the Brittany region with Ateliers d'Art de France. Today, she works in her own workshop based in Brittany.
Karine N'guyen Van Tham conceives her garments as objects of inheritance that are not worn but displayed.
This vision is born from childhood memories; where she sees the care given to the clothes of those who were loved.
Of those who have left them.
She remembers this object that hears the living speak, receives the caresses and the tears shed.
She remembers how difficult it is to part with them and how impossible it is to move them.
Karine understood, at a very young age, the power of this element, inseparable from Man, which becomes an extension of his being.
Marked by this object of link, necessary to the memory of her family, she has never ceased to create these "soul supports" to invest, to be close to or never to leave.
And it is through them that she questions the emotions of the living in the face of loss and the inescapable, but also in the face of the sometimes shattering discovery of fragments of life marked by history or the tumult of life itself.
She weaves bridges between the Past and the Present and sheds light on our own relationship to history, to time and to their impermanent nature.
Karine sees garments as a relic of the Living, of smells, postures and emotions.
Her textile works - particularly inspired by the medieval history of East Asia and the clothes that mark it out - are all imagined by the artist without ever making a historical reconstruction.
They are the remnants of another time, the only witnesses of a forgotten past, of a fragment of life that has been forgotten.
A fragment of life that she endeavours to recount in the form of poems and worn textiles, with deep scars.
A subtle dialogue between emotion and material that the artist maintains and that materializes in her hands; Karine feels, writes, weaves, immerses her hands in vegetable colours, embroiders her pine cone scales, wears and shapes.
The sacredness of her works is rooted in her workshop where the notion of time is lost and disappears. Where the artisanal and personal techniques allow her to deeply conscientize the fragment of life to be revealed.
She is not interested in the search for perfection, nor in a smooth and polished finish. She prefers controlled flaws and wear and tear which, through the story they tell, will breathe soul into the garment.
Karine is attached to the rhythms of the seasons, to their colours and sounds. Nature, omnipresent in her techniques and inspirations, acts as an anchor for this memory in the present.
"Garment is for me an inseparable part of being, it is shaped to us to become our second skin.
Winner of the "Ateliers d'Art de France" regional contest - Creation Prize - Brittany Region
Collective exhibition "L'esprit des forêts" - Horae gallery - Paris, France
Collective exhibition "Festival du lin et de la fibre artistique" - Normandie, Seine-Maritime, France
Collective exhibition "Déconfilement" - The Fibery, Fiber art gallery - Paris, France
Collective exhibition "Mutations" - Sofitel Paris Le Faubourg - The Fibery, Fiber art gallery - Paris, France
Solo show " Des mots à la matière, de la matière aux maux" The Fibery, Fiber art gallery - Paris, France
Collective exhibition "Japanese Textile & Craft festival" - Craft central - London, UK
Collective exhibition "Invisibles présences" - The Fibery, Fiber art gallery - Paris, France
Collective Exhibition "Parures, Objets d'art à porter" - Factory Museum - Roubaix, France
Solo show "De fils et d'âmes" - La cour des métiers d'Art - Pont-scorff, Brittany, France
Collective exhibition - L'atelier, d'Ateliers d'Art de France - Paris, France
Collective exhibition - Maison & Objet - Paris, France