South Korean cartoonist Kim Jung Gi dies of ‘sudden’ heart attack in Paris aged 47

South Korean cartoonist who holds the Guinness World Record for ‘longest drawing by a person’ has died of a heart attack.

Kim Jung Gi, 47, died ‘suddenly’ in Paris on Monday, employee Hyun Jin Kim announced today.

Mr Jung Gi, who had completed his last schedule in Europe, was on his way to New York when he experienced ‘chest pain’ at the airport.

He was taken to hospital for surgery, but “sadly passed away.” Mr Jung Gi leaves behind a wife and two children.

The cartoonist’s latest exhibition, housed in The Daniel Maghen Gallery, will remain on view until Saturday at the request of his family.

South Korean cartoonist Kim Jung Gi, 47, (pictured in 2016) died ‘suddenly’ of a heart attack in Paris on Monday

Mr Jung Gi holds the Guinness World Record for 'longest drawing by a person'.  He is pictured at the 35th Comic Fair in Barcelona on March 30, 2017

Mr Jung Gi holds the Guinness World Record for ‘longest drawing by a person’. He is pictured at the 35th Comic Fair in Barcelona on March 30, 2017

“It is with great sadness and heavy heart that we inform you of the sudden passing of Kim Jung Gi,” Mr Jin Kim told The Independent, describing how the artist suffered a heart attack at the airport.

“Jung Gi went to the airport to fly to New York, where he developed chest pains and was taken to a nearby hospital for surgery, but unfortunately passed away.”

He concluded: ‘After doing so much for us, you can now put down your brushes. Thank you Jung Gi.’

The Daniel Maghen Gallery also paid tribute to the late artist in a heartfelt Instagram post that read: “It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Kim Jung Gi on Monday evening in Paris.

“His sudden disappearance is in stark contrast to the immense happiness he has brought us. We are speechless.

“Daniel Maghen, the entire gallery team, and in particular Olivier Souillé, who accompanied him for ten years, are terribly saddened by his loss.”

The gallery expressed its condolences to Mr Jung Gi’s wife, children and loved ones, as well as his collaborators and fans for “for whom his disappearance will leave a great void.”

Mr Jung Gi, (pictured in 2019) who had completed his last schedule in Europe, was on his way to New York City when he experienced

Mr Jung Gi, (pictured in 2019) who had completed his last schedule in Europe, was on his way to New York City when he experienced “chest pain” at the airport. He was taken to hospital for surgery, but “sadly passed away.” He leaves behind a wife and two children

The Daniel Maghen Gallery paid tribute to the late artist in a heartfelt Instagram post

The Daniel Maghen Gallery paid tribute to the late artist in a heartfelt Instagram post

The cartoonist's latest exhibition, housed in The Daniel Maghen Gallery, will remain on view until Saturday at the request of his family.  Mr Jung Gi is pictured in the Paris gallery in February 2016

The cartoonist’s latest exhibition, housed in The Daniel Maghen Gallery, will remain on view until Saturday at the request of his family. Mr Jung Gi is pictured in the Paris gallery in February 2016

Born in Goyang-Si, South Korea, Mr. Jung Gi showed an interest in art from an early age and enrolled in an art school at the age of 19.

He later earned a Master of Art and Design degree from Dong-Eui University of Busan, according to his online biography.

The artist also served in the South Korean military for two years as part of the Special Forces Unit, where he was able to memorize the array of various weapons and vehicles.

Mr Jung Gi has previously said that his most notable career asset is his memory, which he has developed over a number of years.

“His ability to render extremely complicated scenes almost perfectly from memory, without the aid of references, has pushed the boundaries of what many artists thought was possible,” states his artist biography.

His first published work was a Korean comic book called Funny Funny, which he taught at several private schools and universities.

He collaborated with several other comic book artists throughout his career, creating art for political residencies, and illustrating novels and album illustrations.

He released six sketchbooks during his lifetime and also holds the record for “Longest Drawing by a Person” in the Guinness World Records book.

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