50-year flow of artwork spurred by water drops

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50-year flow of artwork spurred by water drops


Kim Tschang-yeul, one of the most renowned Korean artists of his generation, poses in front of one of his “Recurrence” works at Gallery Hyundai in central Seoul. Provided by the gallery

“I hope I will be remembered as an artist who was ... at least not a chip in porridge,” said Kim Tschang-yeul, 84, one of the most renowned Korean artists of his generation, after a preview of his retrospective late last month.

His water drop paintings, which he painted and developed for more than four decades, are among Korean art collectors’ favorites. The paintings show the hyperrealistic images of water drops, which cause viewers to see an optical illusion. Still, when seen from afar, the paintings look like spiritual abstract art rather than representational trompe l’oeil paintings.

The retrospective at Gallery Hyundai, in the art zone east of Gyeongbok Palace in central Seoul, features about 40 of Kim’s water drop paintings, ranging from those made in the 1970s to his latest works. The gallery opened the retrospective on Thursday to celebrate the 50th year of Kim’s career and the planned establishment of a museum for him on Jeju Island in 2015. Kim donated 200 paintings to Jeju Provincial Government for the museum.

The exhibition runs until Sept. 25. It is free. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday. Go to exit No. 1 of Anguk Station, line No. 3 and walk for 10 minutes. Call (02) 2287-3500, or visit www.galleryhyundai.com.

By MOON SO-YOUNG [symoon@joongang.co.kr]

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