A Clue into Minimalism

This morning, over my breakfast coffee, I came across a review of an exhibition of minimalist abstraction. Okay, I didn’t know that’s what it was, it was the heading that made me click through: The Defiance of the Great Korean Painter, Yun Hyong-keun.

The first image shows large rectangles of dark, then there’s another and another. My mind conncts to Rothko, though he used more colour.

I read that the artist used “two colors, burnt umber and ultramarine blue“. That explains the rich, deep dark that pulls you in, even though it’s just a photo.

Then I read: “The premise of my painting is the door of heaven and earth. Blue is the color of the sky. Brown is the color of the earth. So I call the ‘heaven and earth’; the portal gives structure to the composition.”

And the painted shapes stop being rectangles.

These are paintings “for those who would reflect upon that engagement, rather than looking at a work only to register what is seen and then move on.”

Seen against a rustic wall rather than gallery white, as in these in photos, they feel like an invitation to reach in. Especially this one.

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