Kim Hong do, one of the Asia's greatest painters of the 18th century...A story of the ninth-generation artist, Kim Young hwa, who is expanding 'K-Art' to the global stage
Critics say "Kim Young hwa is excellent in a field croquis, inheriting Danwon’s DNA...noting a modern style combining East and West art”
Danwon Kim Hongdo was the Most Prodigious Painter in the 18 th Century of Asian World.
Born in 1745, Kim Hongdo created numerous masterpieces during his lifetime of 60 years and is considered one of the most talented painters in Korean art history. In the 18th and 19th centuries in Asia, particularly in China, Japan, and Korea, painters often excelled in one genre, but art historians consider that Kim Hongdo was the only artist who was excellent in all genres of painting, including landscape painting, portraits, folk painting, Taoist and Buddhist painting, and flower and bird painting.
Recognizing the talent of the 'unsurpassed genius', the King Jeongjo (reigned 1776-1800) respected him so highly that he gave him the best treatment among the court painters and even appointed him the prefect of Yeongpung in an unprecedented move.
However, after the King Jeongjo’s death, he was forced to live a very poor and difficult life due to backstabbing by those who were jealous of Danwon.
After Danwon’s death, his painting style was inherited to his sole son Kim Yang-gi. Kim Yang-gi left landscape paintings, and flower and bird paintings and was even said to have a good vision. However, he failed to escape the shadow of his father, a ‘hero of the art world’.
There are no detailed records of the Danwon Kim Hongdo’s descendants after Kim Yang-gi. However, due to his exceptional artistic DNA, his descendants are said to have been active in artistic fields such as pottery.
Following the Danwon’s sixth generation Kim Sang-hee and seventh generation Kim Il-bae, the eighth generation, Kim Yun-tae, has been recognized for perfectly recreating the dawan (tea bowl) of the Goryeo Dynasty. Designated as the Busan Intangible Cultural Property No. 13, the master of pottery, he is succeeded by painter Kim Young-hwa and professor Kim Young-gil of the Department of Living Ceramic Art at Busan Institute of Science and Technology.
Particularly, Kim Young-hwa, a female artist, is considered to be a prominent figure in painting among the descendants of Danwon.
Kim, the ninth generation, majored in oriental painting at Hongik University and has attracted attention from the art community for her style that combines East & West.
Critics say that Kim Young-hwa has inherited Danwon's DNA as it is, among other things, and is particularly excellent in a field croquis.
Danwon captured the lives of common people in the place where they lived and expressed them in his paintings with wit. Kim Young-hwa is also considered a field artist who sketches and paints quickly on the spot. Her character to share and enjoy art with her friends is also said to come from Danwon’s DNA.
* [Artist] Kim Hongdo, the Most Prodigious Painter in the 18th Century Asia -> (Wiki korea article) https://naver.me/x2k8B41g
Like Danwon who created portraits, folk paintings, and landscape paintings without distinction, she has been creating excellent works in each field, including figurative, abstract, and portrait paintings.
Kim Young-hwa created 'Standard Portrait of Baekje's 25th King Muryeong'. A standard portrait sets the standard for the appearance of the great men and women of Korean history, and this means that she was recognized as a portrait artist.
The abstract painting "Peace-Moment," which she donated to the Art Bulguk International Art Exchange late last year in hopes of ending the war in Ukraine, is now trading at half a million dollars, up 10 times more in just over five months, as an NFT.
She is particularly active on the global stage, pursuing the globalization of 'K-Art'.
Since having her 60th solo exhibition in New York last December, she has reportedly been receiving invitations to a series of overseas exhibitions from curators who have valued highly her unique artistic style of using oriental materials on canvas.
Art critic Kim Yoon-seop (President of the Korean Arts Management Institute) described Kim's work as "gumyi bulu hwayi bulchi (儉而不陋華而不侈, frugal but not shabby, colorful but not extravagant)".
"It is not easy to describe Kim Young-hwa's paintings with a single word. They are too vividly emotional to be called mere abstract paintings, and yet too indefinable to be called realistic figurative paintings. Her works remind me of the technique, seemingly with no particular technique, which utilizes the rhythm of nature or the aesthetics of bakseok (thin stone)..." (Kim Yoon-seop)
Today, the global art market is in a transition to a new phase with the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) painters while facing the NFT era.
Painter Kim Young-hwa said, "The introduction of blockchain-based systems like NFT has brought forth a new dimension in the art industry. However, the rise of AI-generated painters has raised various issues.”
She added, "Even though AI is capable of producing impressive artwork, it lacks the energy and vibrancy that an artist brings to their creation. I believe that artworks that possess these vital qualities are the ones that hold significant value.”
The spotlight is on artist Kim Young-hwa who is the sole direct descendant of Kim Hongdo, as she expands the horizons of 'K-Art' by utilizing her inherited DNA of Danwon. Many are curious to witness the unfolding of her artistic endeavors.
▣ Painter Kim Young-hwa shares her art with acquaintances …Giving 10,000 people their instant caricatures
She often draws caricatures of her acquaintances on-the-spot during dinner gatherings. She even drew caricatures of everyone on a large bus during an event. The number of individuals for whom she has drawn caricatures, ranging from public officials and professors to financiers and artists, reaches 10,000.
Pianist Han Nu-ri said, “During a dinner gathering, she drew a caricature on her mobile phone in less than 10 minutes while we waited for our food. I was truly moved by her talent.”, adding “I thought she was an artist who truly enjoys art and shares her talents with others.”