淡 daam: Korean Artists Paint Serenity
Why We Recommend it
Three Korean artists convey a sense of Korean identity and a way of viewing the world with a serene and composed state of mind in this group exhibition.
W담 (daam): clear, light in color and taste, dim, calm, serene
淡 (dàn | daam6): mild, light in colour, fresh, indifferent
たん|あわい (dan|awai): light in colour and taste, dim, pale, clear
“淡” is a common and versatile word with multiple definitions in East Asian languages. Depending on context, it can be used to describe colour, taste, or even a state of mind in Korean (담, daam), Chinese (淡, dàn | daam6), and Japanese (たん|あわい(dan|awai).
For this exhibition of works by three Korean artists, the word is used to convey the latter. Unlike the Zen Buddhist practice of emptying your mind, “淡” is closer to maintaining composure and a sense of serenity in the absence of emotional turmoil by believing in one’s own potential and cultivating self-confidence.
The exhibition showcases three generations of Korean artists whose practices date from the 1960s (Suh Seung-Won), 1980s (Kim Keun-Tai), and 2000s (Kim Deok-Han).
The work of these three artists will be displayed alongside a selection of Lee UFan’s works from the with winds and correspondence series. The core aesthetic unites these paintings not just from a visual perspective, but also share the same feelings, states of mind, and sense of being. All four artists represent a distinctly East Asian approach to visual art that differs from Western traditions and can be explained with a quote from artist Kim Keun-Tai: “It’s like a bird has been flying all day long, yet has left no marks of flying.”