With an aesthetic composure derived from his committed practice of self-made mediums of acrylic and charcoal, paired with his sophisticated pictorial reductionism, Lee Bae once again demonstrates his ability to nurturing mortality, dignity, discipline and serenity in Untitled (Lot 1553). Here, intuition and precision outline the seemingly uninhibited paint strokes, reinforced with the rich denseness of the black charcoal, announcing its existence as an anticipated and controlled form.
Formally beautiful in moderate size and consistent palette, Lee emits the same force of energy into the three calligraphic outlines, dividing the exact proportion of density and energy into each brush stroke, thus, presenting a sturdy and indelible graphic form that gleams daringly against the vacant white to outline a crisply rendered and technically precise typography. Spatial construction at first seems effortless and but becomes more diagrammatic, serially fabricated in increasingly terse but plentiful brush strokes. Although such methodical emphasis is a visual contradiction to his seemingly understated and accidental composition, it is solely intentional as he endeavors to bridge the core conception between traditional painting and contemporary art by emphasizing the power of typographic symbols and reductionism of oriental painting.
Consciously designing an organic font, Lee threads his own aesthetic practice with characteristics of typography, emphasizing visual contrasts, attending to the binary concepts of black and white, in particular the textural juxtaposition of dry charcoal reversed into moist paint and matte acrylic reversed into translucent coating. The relationship between typographic text blocks and its surrounding empty space is deciphered as Lee organizes an aesthetic dialogue between the three organic forms; enveloping and uniting them with the nurturing warmth of creamy acrylic, the empty canvas space further illuminates a sense of transience to his works.