Wednesday, March 23, 2016

단색화 (Dansaekwha: Korean Monochrome Painting)

When I read Kate's challenge, I thought of "Dansaekwha" which is my favorite art.

"Dansaekhwa" is a movement that emerged in Korean painting starting in the mid-1970s, when a group of artists began to push paint, soak canvas, drag pencils, rip paper, and otherwise manipulate the materials of painting. Tansaekhwa means monochrome painting in Korean and was used by the critic Lee Yil in 1980 to refer to a group of largely non-figurative paintings painted in neutral hues. Promoted in Seoul, Tokyo, and Paris, Tansaekhwa grew to be the international face of contemporary Korean art and a cornerstone of contemporary Asian art.

Painstaking Endeavor in Silence
Interest in monochrome painting emerged in the Korean art community in the early 1970s and then spread like an irrepressible wave in the mid-70s. Although originating under the influence of Minimal Art from the West, it has taken root and flourished as a uniquely Korean art form over the past 40 years.
But what is that makes Dansaekhwa distinctive from Western monochrome art or Minimal Art? Professor Yoon explained that Western monochrome painting and Minimal Art are rational and logical, based on principles of mathematics and language, while Dansaekhwa is meditative and holistic.

In contrast to the empty painting of Minimalism, Dansaek­hwa reveals an intensity of thought and labor as well as the depth of silence. Though limited to a single color, it evokes a vivid feeling of the colors texture through multiple brushstrokes, repeated tens or hundreds of times. As such, the density of black paint, which results from repeated brushstrokes, cannot be achieved by broad, single strokes. "While Western monochrome painting focuses on the visual, Dansaekhwa is of a tactile quality and expresses the Korean philosophy of assimilation with nature, explained Professor Yoon. It is created from an ecological, cosmological, and earthly viewpoint, in contrast to the formalistic perspective of the West.

With their works, Dansaekhwa artists seek to internalize the aesthetics of Korean spirituality, such as blankness, contemplation, movement within stillness, inaction of nature, and moderation, all based on a traditional principle of going with the flow of nature. All the while they have struggled with themselves to master their own manner of expression. As if cultivating the spirit, they express a transcendental state of mind on canvas through their repetitive brushstrokes. Unlike such Minimalists as Robert Morris or Donald Judd, who suggested concepts but had their works made with industrial materials, Dansaekhwa artists sought to express the truth of nature through rigorous physical dedication over decades, like the monks who undergo arduous meditation.

From : Meditation by Brushstroke Dansaekhwa Korean Monochrome Painting

By Koh Mi-seok, Senior Reporter of Art & Design, The Dong-a Ilbo

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Early Spring: Mostly Monochromatic

I was ready for Kate's challenge after my dyeing experiment from the previous challenge using natural dyes; which, for me was really an exercise in using monochromatic material.

I was SO prepared for Kate's challenge.....that I jumped in the day after her post...and it was finished in no time.  That NEVER happens.  Usually I'm wrestling for some time...some times not very successfully.  

Turns out, that was a very happy coincidence.  I usually get my creative juices going with inspirations from my natural surrounding.

Feb and Mar in New England are REALLY monochromatic!

These pics are viewed from my studio.  Brown, Brown, more Brown, Blue, teeny bit of Green. Hard to get the juices going.

Until you get close.  Yeah!  Color!
I'm really looking forward to viewing our members' responses to this challenge.

Thank you, Kate.  I loved this challenge!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Going green

Green is not my favourite colour, but I have been having fun playing with the many variations of this colour. Taking my garden as inspiration I dyed cotton fabric for a first layer and background of my design. My garden is in need for some care and attention, but I never seem to be home long enough.
Along the way I discovered a lot about this colour.
These are the first steps to completion. All will be revealed in April!

Thursday, March 3, 2016

It is natural.

by Misik Kim

This work was made by fabrics in my storage for a long time.
I am not using them until now.
Because I think the fastness of natural dyed fabrics is not good.
Now I still worry about it.

Some of them has faded.
I washed all of these fabrics again.
Still lost a lot of color and color becomes tender.

It is natural......

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Tranquil Moments

by Lin Hsin-Chen

Solutions to adversities often found in peaceful moments. From natural dyes, I learned that even splendid life ends in simple and solid colors. It is the profound nature philosophy. This work is my visual feedback after experiencing the earthquake.

Calming down and getting life back on track after experiencing disasters is a life issue. When I was creating this work, I experienced the destructive earthquake in Tainan. It is hard to imagine that buildings are falling apart due to crustal deformation and bringing fears to the tranquil life. For this reason, I changed my design to weaving instead of piecing, in hopes of finding stable latitude and longitude lines for my broken homeland and recovering from the disaster speedily. There is no specific horizontal sequence in my work. I wove it freely with curves to depict an alternative beauty of rebuilt buildings with cracks.

The reds on the water lily are lac insects. They absorb nutrients from the host plants and produce red dye. The red dye they produced creates gorgeous and rare hues on silk fibers. The composition of animal protein, lac insects and natural silk, make unique and precious colors. Thank you Sue for the challenge!

Materials: self dyed fabrics with natural dyes from native plants in Taiwan, wool yarn, cotton, linen, silk
Techniques: hand woven, hand appliquéd, quilted, embroidered
Size: 100 x 64 (cm)