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Ancient and Contemporary Korean art in New York

A special loan exhibition with a focus on Korean Buncheong Ceramics and Korean-Japanese artist Lee Ufan’s first North American museum retrospective will be held this year at New York’s most highly acclaimed museums, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Guggenheim Museum.

Poetry in Clay: Korean Buncheong Ceramics from the Leeum Collection at the Met

This year, the Metropolitan Museum of Art will present Korean Buncheong ware through the exhibition "Poetry in Clay: Korean Buncheong Ceramics from the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art."

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art)

The exhibition will explore Buncheong ware, a kind of pottery that was produced from the end of the 14th century through the late 16th century. Approximately 60 pieces, many of which have never been exhibited before in the U.S, will be part of the exhibition, including six registered national treasures, such as the "Large Jar with Inlaid Peony Decoration (Treasure no. 1422)."

Also on view will be selected works by contemporary potters, highlighting how the tradition has been revived and reinterpreted. Although the technique fell out of favor for more than four centuries, its elegant and strikingly modern design continues to resonate with today’s artists and viewers.

Buncheong ceramics from the permanent collection of the Leeum (Photo by Lee HanKoo, Courtesy of Leeum, Samsumg Museum of Art)

The exhibition will also feature a handful of Edo-period Japanese ceramics from the museum’s permanent collection to illustrate the influence of Korean pottery on Japanese works.

The exhibition will start on April 5 and continue through August 31. Education programs will be organized in conjunction with the exhibition, including a lecture program on May 15. Gallery talks will be also offered for general audiences.

For more information, please visit the official website at: (English).

Lee Ufan: Marking Infinity at the Guggenheim

Starting from June 24, a major retrospective devoted to Lee Ufan will be presented at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.

Following exhibitions dedicated to Nam June Paik in 2000, this will be the second time a Korean-born artist has been the subject of a major exhibit at the Guggenheim.

Lee Ufan (b. 1936) is a well-known  Korean-Japanese artist, philosopher and writer. His first North American retrospective will feature 90 of his works from the 1960s to the present, including paintings, sculptures and installation pieces.

(left) Relatum - Dialogue, 2009, iron plate, 200 x 400 x 1.5cm (2 pieces), natural stone, 60 x 60 x 60cm (2 pieces) (right) Relatum - Dissonance, 2009, iron pole: 300 x 4 cm (2 pieces), natural stone: 30 x 30 x 30 cm, 25 x 30 x 25 cm (Courtesy Kukje Gallery, Seoul, Photo by Yong-Kwan Kim)

After leaving Seoul National University’s College of Fine Art mid-course in 1956, Lee moved to Japan to pursue his artistic career. Over the four decades of his career, he has worked in Korea, Japan and Europe, and has a museum dedicated to him on Naoshima Island in Japan.

"Lee Ufan: Marking Infinity" will be held from June 24 to September 28. For more information on the exhibition, please visit the official website at: (English).

By Hwang Dana Staff Writer


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