Lee Ufan, ‘Correspondance’, 2009, Phillips

Correspondance is a visual essay on the inter-relationships between objects, space, matter, and viewer. Employing a minimalistic aesthetic combined with techniques reminiscent of East Asian calligraphy, this work was developed through the careful application of oil paint and metallic pigment through singular brushstrokes in layers over an extended period of time. The silver square of fading brushstrokes floats freely over a background painted in a creamy white which is representative of the artist’s traditional colour palette.

There is a philosophical approach to making art, which is best displayed in this series, where the symbolism and meaning of the work is developed through the process of making the work rather than the overall completed appearance. At the heart of Ufan’s philosophy is he notion of the meaning behind interactions between art object, the natural world, and humanity, as the artist explained ‘the highest level of expression is not to create something from nothing, but rather to nudge something that already exists so that the world shows up more vividly.'

  • Courtesy of Phillips

Signed and dated 'L. UFAN '03' on the overlap. Further signed, titled and dated 'Lee Ufan "Correspondance" 2003' on the reverse.

"Lee Ufan"

Lisson Gallery, London (January 21 - February 28, 2004)

Lisson Gallery, London
Acquired from the above by the present owner

About Lee Ufan

A pioneer of the Japanese Mono-ha (School of Things) movement, Lee Ufan arranges his installations and sculptures to emphasize the equal relationship between the artwork, the viewer, and the space, a philosophy best illustrated by his “Relatum” series, a series of stretched canvases on the floor, each topped by a single stone. Ufan uses materials including glass, steel, rubber, and stones in shades that are usually subdued and often monochromatic. His paintings exhibit a similar logic, applying muted color on a light, plain background in a style reminiscent of East Asian calligraphy, whereby the brush stroke fades as it ends.

Korean, b. 1936, Seoul, South Korea, based in Kamakura, Japan; Paris, France