Aesthetic Harmony Between simplicity and Sophistication

Aesthetic Harmony Between simplicity and Sophistication

kim Kwang Myung

Aesthetic Harmony Between simplicity and Sophistication 

I. We can see the art world of Lee Suk Ja originated from a certain observation of feminine tradition in Yi dynasty. It means most of her objects are consisted with women usual things of necessity, and marriage stuffs showing brilliant color. Through these things she also creates the characteristic color painting. As you know we Korean\'s favorite color is white. For this reason we have not enough chance to face with various colors itself. 

  Therefore she has paid deep attention to internal color-sense. And threaded her way in Grocery Street and a back-lane in a town or searched something in a danggi (Korean pigtail ribbon) purse, a small wrapping cloth, a spoon bag, a pillow slip, and cushion. All these things remind her of some attraction and color-sense of our ancestors, especially women. 

  Whenever she is faced with a patterned figure of embroidery, she defines deep blue of indigo as a Korean women\'s favorite and unique color. And she can not exclude another like that of cabbage (of course it has some different nuance of nowadays) 

  Anyways she has tried continuously to recreate new art world with the old one. Once she said. \"It\'s not easy to explain about antiquity, but there is some particular mood. It just called Hahn (spite) “involving elegance. 
   This is reminds us Winckelmann\'s famous remark. “Greek Art has noble simplicity and silent greatness.” 
   Because her work shows us concrete description of reality with (Hahn Aspite) in its background. 

Ⅱ. She turned her eyes to another object, that\'s just flower. She said she can find the nature of beauty and antiquity in flower. Like this her attitude of working is based on modernity of modernism. Because she has concerned not only in flower itself but also the other flower rooted in this industrial society. If you look her work, the opium popy colored by gold-dust or silver dust, you\'ll know it\'s just the flower of this mechanically civilized society. 

  Concerned on the portrait it also has same mood with flower It means a portrait who puts on mechanized expression like a mannequin. All her efforts represent some regret of this age. In general, the image of flower, especially for women, is just pretty and elegant. It\'s true. But how we get the meaning of identity between  the modern figures and flower. 

   In addition to why do they consist in same space of canvas? Looking into this change of her attitude of art, we can see another concern. Here we feel the very strife for the connection with the Korean and Western. Korean Art can not be independent of the world-art. In other words the orthodoxy of Korean Art can be founded in the cultural connection with the world one. If we agree to this theory, we can understand artist Lee\'s Journey for searching new object. 

   Finally she fixed her eyes on “barley,” form its grain to its stem. These efforts compose whole barley field. Sometimes the clear exaggeration of each grain prevails her canvas. But the most important thing is some reflection of her life into her work. It\'s never mere her thought or desire. This overripe barley field gives her a chance to talk with herself. So we can call her work as a field of her life, not mere barley field. And also it\'s just we Korean\'s life-field through the history. 

   Now let\'s her barley series, \"Make barley 1, 2, 3...10\". and Cheung Mak (blue barley) Baik Mak (white barley) Golden Barley, and recent Pung Mak (wind barley) etc. 

   I wonder what Korea’s own nature is. What relationship is there between Korean people and nature? What meaning does this give us? When I see her work, Barley series, I feel strong rigorist of life. So the drawing makes some reality like coming out this world. There is a certain order behind the activity. What on earth is the order? 

   She always shows the order through her own life. The life is never passive motion but active one excluding conflict or agony of life. 
   You will be impressed with her perfect observation with reality in her work. 
Her passion for art is not only in reality also in idea and future. 
   I remember her saying when she looked around the barley field in Pochen province. At that time she looked besides herself. Can you imagine the situation? 
That\'s the very moment of (Cairos), And it\'s a secret moment for communicating of man and nature of the eternal present, and contemplation. 
Ⅲ. Above all she is absorbed in the unique color of traditional wooden bowl. She doesn\'t want to accent on some decoration instead of her deep private emotion. Looking into the wooden bowl of Yi Dynasty, she tries to modernize that color through her work. But it\'s inevitable for her to take burden of oppression for summation in her art. Even though she succeeded to express her thought and desire into her work with the particular consistence of every craftsmanship. 

   After deep inquiry of barley, she found some exotic figure of image of nude in flower. In fact, nude is everlasting abject with beauty for all artists. 
This always affects artists to feel new desire for creation. She never neglected for this area, and uses it for her self-training in work. In Eve\'s Series, we can find various color based on our traditional patterned figure. Among them nude appears a kind of portrait of artist oneself with brisk expression on canvas.
   Her object never fixed on one thing do you know a cattle of calf in her canvas? With her object, calf is not just things to get accidental. 
   It means she choose it as object through serious observation. She once said the eyes of calf show its character, namely its loneliness, self sacrifice, and self transcending. Therefore when she looked into its eyes, she could not but turn her eyes to the other direction. Because like that identity is the same of we human beings. It\'s a kind of empathy, especially the curve line of calf back show us the real empathy of this nature and man. 

Ⅳ.  What is the real goal of her art world? 
Its unsophisticated or naivety without any artificial motif. Even though we can feel great pleasure with her work. For her simplicity and sophisticated in art. Recently her performance involves in freedom with too much enough ink. She never tries to follow formal figure. But it\'s very strange phenomena to show some image without any concrete figure. Certainly she a ready transcended the basic sense of creation of even she tried to escape from fixed pattern. 

   Her art world seems sometimes \'triple\'.  What does it mean triple? she has been wandering between possibility and impossibility, in other words, she has been conflict\'s between life and death, reality and ideal world. It is very natural there are serious gap between the two as pects of things. She tried to add one more the opposite concept, traditional and modern rule. She contributed to construct a brige between that two spots. 

   For a moment we need to look over her earlier work. It shows some immature mood, because she observed in only tradition, especially feminine morals. But gradually her objects change its garment. It\'s a sort of her maturing process in art. 
Though this long journey finally she has reached meaning point, reality towards future. 
   I hope 90\'s of art, to be a whole balanced age of conflicts, confrontation, opposition, alienation with dialectic way, but this will be possible only with our reverence of nature and experienced beauty by ourselves. It means for the real beauty, we all need to join that meaningful work. Now can you understand why I used the word, triple to express Lee\'s art world? Because dialectic composed with thesis, antithesis, and synthesis. Without overcoming double essence, it\'s impossible to expect new world, based on synthesis. 

                                                   (Monthly Magazine \'Art World\')

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