Hong Jung Hee colors her world

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Hong Jung Hee colors her world


Three oil paintings in “Passion” series (2003) are part of artist Hong Jung Hee’s solo show that opens at the 2GIL29 Gallery in southern Seoul on Friday. [2GIL29GALLERY]

Veteran Korean artist Hong Jung Hee, often dubbed the “master of colors,” will open a solo show after a five-year hiatus, at 2GIL29 Gallery, southern Seoul, on Friday.

The exhibition, titled “Becoming,” will feature the 74-year-old artist’s 38 paintings. They include the “Passion” series, created in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and the “Nano” series, which the artist has been working on since 2005.

“My painting represents nothing but remains as a painting itself [...] The painting surface is a being [instead of an illusion],” Hong wrote in a note. “The independence of a painting is expressed the most remarkably through its colors.”

To strengthen colors’ materiality, the artist mainly used primary colors and often mixed sawdust or used coffee grounds into oil paint, she added in the note. Indeed, her paintings boast strong colors - mainly scarlet, hot pink, magenta and bluish green - in unique, heavy textures.

“I have been inspired by Korea’s nature, hanbok [traditional Korean dress] and old architecture covered with dancheong [traditional decorative coloring on wooden buildings],” the artist wrote.

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

The exhibition runs through April 20. The gallery is closed on Monday. Go to Sinsa Station, Line No. 3 exit 8, and walk 10 minutes. For details, visit www.2gil29gallery.com.
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