In Suh Se-ok’s series of paintings titled People, begun in the late 1970s, abstracted human figures form a human chain, hand in hand, and are painted with a minimum of strokes rendered with precise and brief movements of the brush. Suh’s work reflects the tradition of 18th-century literati monochrome ink painters, who rejected the use of color because they felt using color in painting was a futile attempt at imitating nature. Suh frequently addresses the subject of humanity by rendering either the outline of a human form or the Chinese character for human. The calligraphic and painterly come together as he applies black ink in vigorous and undulating brushstrokes that create a minimalistic yet powerful image.


Cataloguing data may change with further research.

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Artist
Suh Se Ok, Korean, born 1929
Title
People
Date
2003
Medium
Ink on mulberry paper
Dimensions
Sheet: 33 × 55 in. (83.8 × 139.7 cm)
Credit Line

Museum purchase funded by the Caroline Wiess Law Accessions Endowment Fund

Current Location
Not on view
Accession Number
2008.532
Classification
Painting
Provenance

Research ongoing