“Lee Ufan”

Lee Ufan at Le Corbusier

Listed as UNESCO world heritage, the Couvent de la Tourette, designed in 1953 by Le Corbusier, is hosting, as part of the Biennale de Lyon, the works of Lee Ufan. Minimalism and a sensitive relationship with space… After Versailles in 2014, the artist faces the austerity of the famous Dominican convent. An encounter.   Born in 1936, the Korean artist moved to Japan in 1956 and embarked on studies in Western philosophy. He is one of the main protagonists and theoreticians of the Mono-ha (“School of Things”) movement, emerging in 1968 and exploring the association of untransformed manufactured objects with elements of nature. “We must learn to see all things as they are without objectifying the world by means of representation which is imposed by humans,” he wrote in 1969 in the journal Critique du design. Ever since, Lee Ufan has worked in this fashion, uncompromisingly, relating places and materials, creating constantly renewed dialogues between the made and the non-made. His sculptural approach is reflected by his paintings characterised by coloured markings. For every exhibition, the artist recalls the necessity to work in situ in order to observe and be in tune with the space. In Lyon, Lee Ufan has created a series of installations, some of which hold the particularity of being ephemeral constructions, like his Japanese-paper room set in the middle of concrete pillars.   In this spot invested by a strong architectural gesture, how did you go about making your works dialogue with Le Corbusier? The idea that the artwork is a place of mediation between the inside and the outside has long pre-existed in my work. All my works have thus been thought out in relation to spaces and the relationship between the inside and the outside, perfectly accomplished by Le Corbusier in this impressive piece...

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A gallerist couple and a fake Lee Ufan

According to Le Journal des Arts, three new arrests have been made in Seoul, Korea, in relation to the trafficking of fake Lee Ufan works. The three persons are accused of having produced and sold around forty forged works said to be by Lee Ufan, winner of the Praemium Imperiale in 2001. In June this year, another gallerist was indicted even though Lee Ufan denied that the works were fakes. The forgeries are based on pieces from the “From Point” and “From Line”...

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Pace Gallery presents an exhibition of Lee Ufan

Pace Gallery, based in Hong Kong, China, announced the first solo exhibition of Korean artist Lee Ufan in its spaces, from 20 November 2015 to 9 January 2016, at the 15C entertainment building. The exhibition will present the new works of the artist Lee Ufan. Born in 1936 in Kyongsang-namdo in Korea, he emerged as one of the founders and principal defenders of the avant-garde Mono-ha (“School of Things”) in the 1960s, which constitutes the first movement of international contemporary art known in Japan, rejecting the Western notions of representation while concentrating on the materials, their perception and the interactions between space and subject. Lee Ufan creates sculptural works, only from steel and stone. In 1970, the artist declared “[t]he highest level of expression is not to create something from nothing, but rather to alter something that already exists so that the world shows up more vividly.” Lee Ufan was subject of a retrospective at the Solomon R. Guggenheim museum in 2011, and has more recently created 12 installations specially for the Château de...

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Lee Ufan at Lisson Gallery

From 25 March until 9 May 2015, Lisson Gallery in London is to host an exhibition of new works by the South Korean artist Lee Ufan. Often described as a minimalist artist, Ufan uses the smallest possible gestures to create the maximum possible effect. His most recent series of Dialogue paintings are made up of single sweeps of paint which are built up over time, in strong colours such as blue and red, marking a move away from the artist’s usual grey palette. Mixed in with the paints is finely crushed stone, connecting the large-scale paintings to the installations that are also on display, such as that of a large rock placed in front of a blank canvas. Lee Ufan came to prominence in the late 1960s as an important figure in the Mono-ha (Object School) group; Japan’s first contemporary art movement to gain international recognition. It rejected Western notions of representation, focusing on the relationships of materials and perceptions rather than on expression or...

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Lee Ufan at Versailles

Versailles, 29 November 2013, Art Media Agency (AMA). The Korean minimalist artist Lee Ufan is to be the guest artist at the Château de Versailles in 2014, his Parisian gallery, Kamel Mennour, has announced. Following in the footsteps of Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami, Joana Vasconcelos and Giuseppe Penone, Ufan is to have the privilege of exhibiting in the former royal residence’s gardens. Lee Ufan is one of the leading artists of the Japanese avant-garde movement Mono-Ha (literally, “school of things”), which developed during the 1970s and is similar to the Italian Arte Povera movement. The artist has since been one of the major players on the contemporary art scene, and in 2011 the Solomon R. Guggenheim museum in New York held a significant retrospective of his work. Presently, he is to be exhibited at the Parisian Kamel Mennour gallery until 25 January 2014. His works are unique, and focus on natural elements (stones taken from riverbeds) installed within human environments (museums, galleries), which he uses to criticise modern objects. Ufan also plays with full and empty spaces, fact and fiction and, in his canvas pieces, his work concentrates mainly on line. He has described his output and his style of working at length in several essays. The exhibition at Versailles is to be curated by Alfred Pacquement, who is to leave his post as Director of the Musée national d’Art moderne in Paris’s Pompidou Centre at the end of...

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