Hyunmee Lee’s solo show at Nuart Gallery titled ‘Monochromatic Explorations’ coincided with Lee’s arrival to Santa Fe. The monochromatic works were inspired by her earlier work that she wanted to bring to fruition. This technique provided an excellent vehicle for the expressions of depth and space.
For the grand opening of Weber County Library (designed by Prescott Muir Architects) Lee, recipient of 2015 Fellowship Award for Visual Arts Excellence, was invited for a solo exhibit. The library purchased a painting for the permanent collection. The meditative gestural qualities of Lee’s work in large scale provided a striking visual experience for the audience of the grand opening. artistsofutah.org
This solo exhibition was designed to celebrate Lee receiving a fellowship from the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. This is the first time Hyunmee Lee has exhibited her ceramic works, a wonderful multimedia display of monochromatic shape and multidimensional layering. This collection contains a large reliance on the relationship between gesture and meditation.
“The beauty of Lee’s work has a potent alchemy, partly rooted in the process of transmuting paint into a substance of value – her superb recent paintings; partly in the incorporation of symbols in the form of mark making and Eastern calligraphy into her oppositional gestural work. There is a new awareness of Korean shamanism, the strength of a self in quietness, a deeply meditative ritual that brings an awakening of magical power. Lee’s paintings are glimpses of Zen. She effectively has added colors, shapes and rhythms that arise from the birds and mountains surrounding her remote studio.” (From an essay by Ann Poore)
Continuing to expand the possibilities of gestural painting by adding calligraphic strokes, careful geometries and Taoist “unconscious gestures,” Lee with this rich exhibition of new works explores the various possible resolutions of abstraction, particularly in showing the depth of mark making that often defines her work.
New Solo series “ Beautiful Disaster” and “Improvisation” with “Native Mumbling.” My canvas is a place to feel both emptiness and fullness. Contrast and imbalance of shapes and lines are playful and floating around.
Solo. Lee’s most recent body of work of “Native Mumbling” Series. In these recent Silent Gesture paintings, Lee seeks to combine opposing forces to reflect her own life, which conveys both East and West. In her vibrant black and yellow canvases, nonrepresentational and representational forms inspired by her roots are brought out slowly through silent gestures.
Solo. “Native Mumbling” Series. “Sori” means sound, “sori sori “ delivers echoing the footsteps of Lee’s own personal journey.
Solo. “Native Mumbling” Series. The essence of this work is her individual journey of writing meditation. “Native Mumbling” is a personal arrival to a meditative state where the Korean letters become gestures.
Solo “Native Mumbling” Series. “Gestural paintings on canvas Sound is made visible as subtle energy in Hyunmee Lee’s deceptively simple paintings. A cross pollination of traditions, combining eastern calligraphy with western gestural abstraction- Lee is grounded in the mid 20th century, yet transcends categorization in time…” READ MORE
Solo. Showing for the first time, the “Native Mumbling” Series. “…Hyunmee Lee uses both actual Korean letters in their complete forms, as well as the gesture and essence of the letters shapes. So lovely is her ability to convey harmony on canvas, it seems effortless – there are no signs of struggle or forced effect. What results is poetry. Limiting her work to words is like describing the subtleties of a personal occurrence to a stranger.” (From the exhibit catalogue.)
20th Solo. Showing Lee’s current works; “Inland Island”, “Inland Crossing” and “Contact-Sensation”. The works bring an harmonious marriage of western abstraction and eastern sensibility.
Solo. Shows “Inland Island” paintings, this series engages Lee’s personal journey in three continents. “Inland Island” paintings are minimal, yet her Large canvases with bold yellow against monochromatic opposition brings energies.
Solo. “With their open planes of luminous yellow, the Inland Island series lifts the extended metaphor of Lee’s personal journey to a more vibrant and lyrical level. The subject further alludes to her current physical environment, but now there is a life-enabling purity and lightness of touch that contrasts remarkably with the heavily grounded Mountain Armatures of six years before. The contradictory space of the dry desert sea is not set in time. Instead it is energized by a very real presence – the powerful blacks that read like close-up fragments of larger calligraphic forms…” (from an essay by Dr. Brice Adams)
Solo. “Combining intuitive line, nonrepresentational forms, and monochromatic spaces, Lee’s newest works are confident, eloquent, and purely Hyunmee Lee. Strong forms advance from buttery canvases like an abstract garden, while gauzy veils of paint hover like soft air against the ebony weight of matter. Light peeks through translucent shapes like sunlight illuminating through soft mist. …” READ MORE
Solo. The “Dimensional Poetics”, “Contact-Sensation”, “Inland Island”, and “Seraphic Stone” Series. “In her current exhibition, Touch, on display at the Phillips Gallery in Salt Lake City, Utah, Lee focuses on the power of the shape, asserting the desire for her work to become “more simple and bold” as “inspired by a concept of ‘freedom’ from the world” and from the artist’s own mind.” (from an essay by Courtney R. Davis)
Solo. “Thousand of Roads”, “Elysian Foot”, and “Seraphic Stone” Series. The paintings in Foreordained Gesture take their inspiration from both nature and the examination of the conscious and unconscious mind. They also reflect the energy of Korean calligraphy.
Solo. “Confronting the paintings of Hyunmee Lee, what impresses is their celebration of gesture and depiction of a nearly unlimited sense of space. Abstract and intuitively painterly, her aesthetic is one of immediacy perpetually seeking its own nature…” READ MORE
Solo. In conjunction with the “Intimacy without Restraint” exhibit at Utah Museum of Fine Arts.
Solo. “Creation” and “90 Days of Improvisations” Series.
Solo. “Mountain Armatures” and “San Gestures” Series.