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Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible Ocula Report Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible 17 Apr 2019 : Federica Bueti for Ocula

I first visited Havana in November 2016, a few days after Fidel Castro died, and just under a year before Hurricane Irma hit Cuba in September 2017. Since then, much has changed, including the hand-painted signs that punctuate the journey from the airport to the city centre, which today do not celebrate the revolution so much as the 'Unidad y...

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Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui Ocula Conversation Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui

The exhibition Beyond Boundaries at Somerset House in London (12 March–2 April 2019) marked the historic contributions of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing (CAFA) and the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, on the occasion of their 100th and 150th anniversaries, respectively. Spread across several rooms of Somerset House's...

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The National 2019: New Australian Art Ocula Report The National 2019: New Australian Art 13 Apr 2019 : Elyse Goldfinch for Ocula

The National 2019: New Australian Art features work by 70 contemporary Australia-based artists split across three venues: the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW), Carriageworks, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) (29 March–21 July 2019), as curated by Isobel Parker Philip, curator of photographs at AGNSW; Daniel Mudie Cunningham,...

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Kim Whanki

(1913 - 1974), South Korea

A prominent figure in the first generation of Korean Abstract artists, Kim Whanki's works combine traditional Korean concepts and ideals with abstraction. Born 1913, in the South Jeolla province of South Korea, Kim Whanki moved to Japan at the age of 19, and enrolled in the Fine Arts programme at Nihon University, Tokyo. During this time, he joined the Avant-garde Institute in Tokyo, where he studied under Tsuguharu Fujita and Seiji Togo. Soon after his first solo exhibition which was held in 1937 at Amagi Gallery, Tokyo, Whanki returned to Korea and founded the Sinsasilpa Group [Neo-Realist movement] with Artist Youngkuk Yoo and Gyusang Lee.

During the mid 1950s, Whanki based himself in Paris, where he continued to enjoy solo exhibitions at M. Benegite Gallery, and the Institute Gallery among others. In 1963, he represented South Korea in the 7th Sao Paulo Biennale and received the Honorary Award in the category of painting. Throughout his career, Whanki served as professor at the Department of Art, Seoul National University, Seoul and as Dean and professor at Hongik University, Seoul. In 1964, he received a fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation in New York, and showed a body of new work at Asia House Gallery. Kim Whanki passed away in 1974 at the age of 61, in New York. Today, Whanki is celebrated internationally as a pioneering figure among Korean Abstract painters, and in 1992, the Whanki Museum was founded in Seoul to commemorate the artist's life and achievements. 

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Featured Artworks

Untitled 16-11-70 by Kim Whanki contemporary artwork Kim WhankiUntitled 16-11-70, 1970 Oil on canvas
208 x 151.5 cm
Tina Kim Gallery

Recent Exhibitions

Represented By

In Related Press

Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction at Boghossian Foundation in Brussels Related Press Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction at Boghossian Foundation in Brussels Blouin Artinfo : 21 February 2016

Opening at the Boghossian Foundation’s Villa Empain in Brussels this weekend is When Process Becomes Form: Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction, the first exhaustive exhibition of the Korean Dansaekhwa movement in Belgium, featuring some fifty works by seven of its leading proponents: Chung Chang-Sup, Chung Sang-Hwa, Ha Chong-Hyun, Kim Whanki,...

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'When Process Becomes Form: Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction' Related Press 'When Process Becomes Form: Dansaekhwa and Korean Abstraction' Courtesy Tina Kim Gallery : 10 February 2016

When Process Becomes Form is the first comprehensive presentation in Belgium of a number of seminal works by a generation of Korean artists whose negotiation of abstraction has become known as Dansaekhwa.The exhibition consists of some 50 paintings and works of paper drawn from the 1970s and the 1980s, along with a substantial array of archival...

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