Lee Hyunjoung

Born in Seoul in 1972, Lee Hyunjoung studied at Sejong University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1994. She trained as a goldsmith in France where she has been living and working ever since.

 

Through her rich Korean culture, her fine taste for painting and her passionate work with metal; the meeting of the three creates in Lee Hyunjoung's work a lyrical, poetic and impressionistic universe. The result is powerful landscapes with aquatic, bucolic or sandy subjects, always born from the artist's overflowing imagination.

 

"Imaginary journeys between paradise and earth, path between clouds and valleys, I create starry paths for the eyes. My universe is poetic. Like an inner journey, I invite the viewer on a walk, to follow me through these aerial views. They come from my childhood in Korea, my infinite love of painting and my work with metal; it is from these three aspects that I have built my universe. From my past in Korea, I keep the memory of the materials and beliefs of my ancestors. The rice paper is the outer layer of these memories, the enamel saucer their secret symbols. Footprints and signs of life were printed on it, and I was already imagining paintings and landscapes. In France, I took back this raw material, I disintegrated it in water, reshaped it to remove its smooth and native side, and create an irregular texture, more vivid. I reappropriated the rice paper to make it more manifest and share my imaginary paths."

 

In her characteristic universe between earth and sky, she imagines paths where the viewer's gaze wanders with contemplation. She invites to an inner walk.

 

"Just as a perfume can recall a certain moment, my paintings, which I call paths, can awaken the history buried in each of us, and involve us in a personal and spiritual journey. Each line is seen as a day, or a moment that we have already lived or are still living in. My paintings chime with the paths of our lives and the artist's aim is indeed revealed by the names I give to my works."

 

From her South Korean origins, Hyunjoung takes back the material and the tools: in France she reinvents rice paper by disintegrating it in water and removing its smooth side and creating an irregular texture. At the same time, she highlights with Chinese ink and sprinkles with Korean pigments, mixing influences while letting her brush guide her.

 

In 2017, she received the Taylor Prize for Capital Art from the Grand Palais in Paris. For over twenty years, Lee Hyunjoung's work has been exhibited in Europe, South Korea and China through numerous solo and group exhibitions.