Blum & Poe is pleased to present a concise survey of 13 works by Yun Hyongkeun (1928-2007), one of the leading figures of Tansaekhwa, the monochrome painting movement that redefined Korean art starting in the mid-1960s. This is Yun's first solo exhibition with the gallery and his first posthumous solo presentation in North America.
The Tansaekhwa artists variously soaked canvas, pushed paint, dragged pencils, ripped paper, and otherwise manipulated the materials of painting in ways that questioned the terms by which the medium was known. One of the most important and successful artistic movements of 20th-century Korea, Tansaekhwa was promoted in Seoul, Tokyo, and Paris, quickly becoming the globally recognized face of contemporary Korean art.
From the beginning of the 1970s, Yun produced his distinctive Umber Blue series. Straddling the division between ink and oil painting, these abstractions are neither geometric nor gestural. Restricting his palette to umber and ultramarine, Yun diluted the paint with turpentine and allowed it to wash over the canvas, layering it over days, weeks or months to create intense fields of darkness. Each layer of pigment seeped into the fibers at a different rate, resulting in blurred edges along the unmarked expanses of canvas. In the 1990s, these boundaries gradually became more defined, eventually sharpening into hard edges in the final decade of the artist's life.
This exhibition has been organized in collaboration with the Estate of Yun Hyongkeun and PKM Gallery, Seoul.