New York

Suh Seung-Won, Simultaneity 88-724, 1988, oil on canvas, 51 1⁄8 × 63 3⁄4".

Suh Seung-Won, Simultaneity 88-724, 1988, oil on canvas, 51 1⁄8 × 63 3⁄4".

Suh Seung-Won

Tina Kim Gallery

Born in 1941, Suh Seung-Won is younger than the more-prominent painters—such as Ha Chong-Hyun (b. 1935), Park Seo-Bo (b. 1931), or Yun Hyong-keun (1928–2007)—associated with Dansaekhwa, or Korean monochrome painting. Although commonly grouped in with them, Suh, at least during the period covered by this show (1967 to 1989), seems to come from a different branch of abstraction’s family tree: Where their art is earthy, based in process and materials, his hard-edged shapes are rendered in flat hues and inexpressive surfaces, exuding a spirit more akin to that of Russian Suprematism.

The three earliest canvases on view at Tina Kim Gallery, all from 1967, show Suh working with an orthodox modernist vocabulary of planar frontal forms in primary colors, along with occasional moments of white and black. Note that these are the cardinal colors of traditional Korean culture, known as obangsaek, which

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