Lee Bae, From Fire – Pa 49

At his beginnings, in the 1980s, Lee Bae practiced a painting that is in line with the bad painting American and a form of international neo-expressionism. It was when he arrived in Paris in 1989 that he radically changed his style and techniques. Economic constraints as well as the need to maintain a strong link with his culture of origin lead him to choose charcoal as his main creative tool. The latter revives in him the memory of its current and symbolic use in Korea and seems to him to come from the same universe as Indian ink, obtained from soot.

Initially used as charcoal, charcoal is first implemented in compositions that extend the previous work. However, the figuration soon becomes useless in the face of the evocative force of the material and the effects it allows. Lee Bae thus explores his plastic potential in multiple abstract canvases from the second half of the 1990s. From the end of this decade, he also uses carbons stuck on the entire surface of the support before being sanded. Their dust, mixed with the acrylic medium, completely fills the interstices of the composition and highlights, with its matte tone, the shimmering iridescence of the polished pieces of carbon.

Cartel clock :

Lee Bae (born in 1956)
From Fire – Pa 49 2002
Charcoal and medium on canvas, Korea
174 x 139,8 cm
CM 2018-57

Donation from the Antoni Laurent Foundation through the Society of Friends of the Cernuschi Museum, 2018

Photo credit :
© Paris Museums / Cernuschi Museum

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