KUKJE GALLERY
Lee Ufan
(Korean, 1936)
 
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Lee Ufan (b. 1936)
ⓒ Lee Ufan 
Photo: Kukje Gallery
Image provided by Kukje Gallery

An artist and a philosopher, Lee Ufan is one of the founding members of Mono-ha, a movement largely defined by the artist's seminal texts from the late 1960s. Not only did Lee act as a vital conduit between the Korean and Japanese art scenes after his move to Japan in 1956, but was a pivotal figure who introduced Dansaekhwa to a wider international audience from these two countries. The artist's From Point and From Line series in particular, which Lee began in the early 1970s, established many profound connections to the principles of the Dansaekhwa movement. Lee's critically acclaimed body of work, which includes the aforementioned From Point and From Line series, explores themes of gesture and the connection between mark-making and the medium of paint itself. Such abiding interest is grounded in Lee's early studies in traditional calligraphy, which proved to have been a fundamental experiment in the discipline of repeatedly drawing single lines and frames the artist's fundamental investigation into the act of painting.
Lee Ufan was a professor at Tama Art University in Tokyo from 1973 through 2007; he is currently the emeritus professor at the same university. Lee’s work has been exhibited in many solo and group exhibitions in major institutions around the world including the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels, Yokohama Museum of Art, Palazzo Grassi, Venice, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Lee was the focus of a major sculpture exhibition held at the Château de Versailles (2014), along with his retrospective Lee Ufan: Marking Infinity organized by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2011). He has also been widely exhibited in group exhibitions including When Process becomes Form: Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction in collaboration with the Boghossian Foundation, Brussels (2016), Dansaekhwa, an official Collateral Event in the 56th Venice Biennale (2015), Working with Nature: Traditional Thought in Contemporary Art form Korea at Tate Liverpool (1992), the 12th Bienal de São Paulo (1973), the 7th Biennale de Paris (1971), the 10th Bienal de São Paulo (1969), and the 4th Biennale de Paris (1965).