The purpose of painting is to project sentiments by depicting objects or to depict objects for sentimental projection. Sentiment is an impression of the mental state and influenced by what is acquired and contemplated; objects reflect objectivity and concreteness outside of oneself. Personal feelings and meanings vary, resulting in distinct creative expressions. To reflect feelings and meanings by ink and brushes on medium such as papers requires diligence and artistry to deliver a consistent execution of technique, implementing “I paint what I speak” and “what I paint speaks what I think.”
Professor Purume Hong is an internationally acclaimed and celebrated Korean artist. After studying classic Chinese literature and Chinese ink painting in Taiwan, she passed the MA entrance exam and enrolled in Department of Fine Arts at Taiwan Normal University to study aesthetic theory and creative calligraphy and painting, becoming the first Korean to receive a Master of Fine Arts degree. What followed her return to Korea was a PhD pursuit in Art Therapy which the artist successfully completed. Committed to creative production, the artist also taught related courses in colleges. For the past decade, her solo exhibitions held in Europe and America had exceeded twenty and received notable recognition. Her developed creative concepts and artistic styles are celebrated by the global art community and collectors worldwide.
Purume’s diligence and perseverance is exhibited in learning the Chinese language, classic Chinese literature and Chinese ink painting, as well as in acquiring a degree and composing. Her progressive artistic statement is a pursuit of depth and balance, a reflection of scale through micro details and a coexistence of mobility and stability in a macro-environment. Observing her works, one cannot seize the movement, potential or depth if not through tranquility.
The artist’s mastery of technique is achieved through numerous practices with bold strokes and careful finishes. Long and silent examination of the plain canvas is made by dharma eye penetrated and introspected by the heart before her meticulous application and vivid ink layers that show an unconventional and skillful composition of both form and meaning.
Lines are originally Chinese and Oriental features and already prevalent in the wrinkleless landscape, frameless flowers and birds and character sketches in traditional Chinese painting. Except for Liang Kai’s legendary portraits, the use of solid and controlled strokes to evoke a sense of tranquility is witnessed in other categories. Purume effectively applies a variety of calligraphy brushes and broad brushes to mobilize water and ink on paper, illustrating a serene and balanced ambience through audacious strokes and cautious designs.
Another astounding characteristic of Purume’s works of art is the blank spaces reserved on canvas to compliment the aurora of “light.” In traditional Chinese painting, blank spot or whiteness is meant to be carefully calculated in order to balance the black of ink, and thus is a part of the composition and a space for imagination. In western painting, white is usually used in scenery and applied on other colors. Purume’s use of white adopts the traditional Chinese painting approach and presents the effects of light. She is probably the first Oriental ink artist to do so.
In Ming Dynasty's Wang Fu's book Shu Hua Chuan Xi Lu, Wang cited the theory of painting by Ge Shou-chang from the Song Dynasty in the chapter "On Simplification" which indicates: "There are plenty of people that paint. Who wouldn't like to be famous for their unique style? However, most of the works are either too realistic but lack in essence so as to become dull or too purposely simplified and turn out plain and empty. Concise while mature, simple yet complete, these characteristics are solely owned by those who master both techniques and expression of aesthetic concept." This quote best encapsulates Professor Purume Hong’s work of art.
Professor Purume Hong is an outstanding artist. Although she has a solid background in traditional painting, she attempts to re-define doctrines. The artist holds a romantic ideal toward life, embodies a gentle creative soul, projects a mature artistic impression, and motivated by dynamic diligence. The miniature works showcase exquisiteness and the large scale installations accommodate show venues. It is hoped that she brings marvel to each exhibition and gives fantastic future performances.
張 克 晉 2014、7、24於台北 玲瓏山房
Zhang Ke-jin at Taipei Ling-long House, July 24, 2014