Looking at the paintings of Korean artist Egene Koo is like piecing together a puzzle. Her dramatic red portraits of anthropomorphic characters are meant to be allegorical. Just as the tortoise and the hare taught us the rewards of patience and focus, there’s a mysterious moral to Koo’s images. From what we can gather from her titles, her work addresses lessons about change and sin, such as narcissism and greed. At LA Art Show, Koo’s gallery Keumsan also pointed to her themes of environmentalism and our relationship with wildlife, represented by the variety of animals she paints. Her greatest inspirations are the classic fairytales from her childhood; stories about heroes and villians, and good and evil. While Koo’s symbols are layered, viewers can deduct their own meaning because these are universal themes we all relate to.