SE OK SUH (1929-2020)

SE OK SUH Suh Se Ok (Korean: 서세옥, hanja: 徐世鈺, 1929- ) is a South Korean artist.

Suh Se Ok was born into a scholar family in Daegu, South Korea in 1929, and received a BFA in Oriental painting at the College of Arts of the Seoul National University in 1950.

During his formative years, he pursued a modernistic and independent style of lyrical abstraction. He created wonderful illustrations that demonstrated the strengths of pale Indian ink and the empty and marginal spaces of Korean ink-and wash painting.

An accomplished calligraphist, Suh began incorporating calligraphy techniques into his paintings in the 1950s. His figurative or abstract human forms are depicted with his characteristic brushstrokes of varying thickness, tones and lengths, painted in ink on rice and mulberry paper.

Suh Se Ok had a solo exhibition at Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York in 2018, and is part of a group show "be/ longing" until August 2020.

He has been honored with countless awards in Korea, and was given solo exhibitions at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea (2015, 2005); the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, TX (2008); and Maison Hermes, Tokyo, Japan (2007).

Suh participated in the 1963 São Paulo Biennale, the 1966 exhibition of Korean Arts in Malaysia, the 1st Modern Painting Biennale in Italy in 1969, the 1967 Exhibition of Korean Arts in France, and the 1st Cannes Painting Festival in 1969.

Suh's work can be found at the Bergen Museum of Art and Science, NJ; the British Museum, London; the Fukuoka Art Museum, Japan; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul; the Rhode Island School of Design Museum; the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul; the Sonje Museum of Contemporary Art, Gyeongju, Korea.

He was given an Honorary Doctorate from the Rhode Island School of Design Fine Art, Providence, RI in 1988.

Suh Se Ok's son, Do-ho Suh is also a well-known contemporary artist and who lives in New York City.


ink wash on paper
40 x 44 in.
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