YONG JO JI

 

 

 

View his
artistic biography

 

View his paintings
(available in PDF)
Earth Series
Fire Series
Heaven Series

Water Series

Statement of Purpose:

In his own words
The state created by the moment of my piece of art lasts as long as the life that you are contained in. My works of art are an act of nature, a metaphor, a single inner vision as the process of creating art becomes the art itself. The infinite expressed, captured on the finite canvas. Sometimes geometric shapes or images are used, as symbols for the emotion of the moment, which are understood by all. Sometimes I place elements of myself in the work, for example as my hand does Korean script or a gesture. These forms convey the moment, I use texture to do this, and colors that are emotionally charged. Mark Rothko used colors in this way. He worked two contrasting colors together to show tension, creating a sense of the sublime.

The landscapes I create are really moods or atmospheres. The geometric, flattened scenery merely offsets the richly layered brushwork which draws the viewer into its emotional state. This powerful moment, the union of nature and brush strokes, is felt on the canvas. We all try to have these moments in our lives, they are enlightenment. They represent the infiniteness of the world. We cannot capture the already existing world in its entirety, so we need to become part of it; it existed before. We, and our actions, our deepest emotions, are acts of nature. Early works of Zen painters and Sumie painters captured moments of nature with fluid brush strokes. Literali painters, through intellectual understanding, saw how necessary it was to minimize their existence within the whole of the earth. Abstract painters, too, tried to capture that moment of understanding that reaches far beyond the visual or intellectual realms.

The innovative style of some literati painters was simultaneously expressive and reactive to sentiment. With this sentiment at the moment of creation, the act of making art becomes an art of nature. Similar to Zen artists, and abstract expressionist painters the outcome is secondary to the act of creation. A moment is captured in the dense atmosphere of the canvas. This art work is indeed dense, richly interweaving color and brush strokes to create and destroy forms, to reveal a deeper universal form of nature, the sublime - the tangible. And this powerful moment, this union of nature and brush strokes, is felt in the canvas, so that the landscape is merely there, much as, in a sunset, the color and intensity of light steal the show from the scenery itself. This tension created is the moment of understanding one has when nothing seems to make sense. Yet we know there is an overarching rhythm to our lives. Through my work, I seek the universal language of all things as did American painters Mark Tobey and Mark Rothko. I am guided by a pure pleasure of the process of creation. I cherish the capturing of a moment.

 

 
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