Books on Art

Jungu Yoon: Spirituality in Contemporary Art — The Idea of the Numinous Zidane Press 2010, 160pp For a westerner struggling to understand some of the spiritual or mystical elements in both traditional and contemporary Asian art there is a huge barrier in that Taoism and other Eastern philosophies are not something that we have lived […]

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New book on Korean artefacts in Oxford

by Philip Gowman 26 August 2011
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Oxford’s Bodleian Library announces the publication of a new book on historic Korean artefacts in the University’s collections. It accompanies an exhibition which runs 26 August to 26 September 2011 in the Proscholium at the Bodleian Library: Korean Treasures: Rare Books, Manuscripts and Artefacts in the Bodleian Libraries and Museums of Oxford University by Minh […]

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Kim Young-na: Modern and Contemporary Art in Korea

by Philip Gowman 5 February 2007
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Kim Young-na: Modern and Contemporary Art in Korea (Hollym, 2005) A brief but action-packed overview of twentieth century Korean art history, which can be read alongside Kim’s other book covering the same period, published by Lawrence King. While her Lawrence King book is a collection of essays focusing on particular subject areas, the Hollym book […]

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Chung Hyung-min: Modern Korean Ink Painting

by Philip Gowman 3 January 2007
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(Hollym, 2006) A well-illustrated and easy-to-read book which traces the development of ink painting in the 20th century from its roots in the Chosun dynasty: the famous “court” painter O-won (Jang Seung-eop, 장승업, immortalised in Im Kwon-taek’s Chihwaseon), and the literati style perfected in Kim Jeong-hi (김정희). Chung emphasises the importance of the short-lived (1911-19) […]

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Kim Young-na: 20th Century Korean Art

by Philip Gowman 31 July 2006
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(Lawrence King, 2005) A collection of articles, turned into a book. As I’m neither an art critic nor an art historian I’m going to restrict myself to a chapter-by-chapter summary of the ground covered. A useful overview of colonial period art. Highlights the difficulty of studying & researching the art history of the period, in […]

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Judith G. Smith (ed): Arts of Korea

by Philip Gowman 17 April 2006
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(Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1998) Beautifully illustrated with articles on Pottery, Buddhist Culture, Landscape Painting and other topics. A seriously lavish book, with a price tag to match. I’ll comment further once I’ve dipped into it.

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Roderick Whitfield (ed): Handbook of Korean Art – Folk Painting

by Philip Gowman 17 April 2006
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(Laurence King Publishers, 2003) Part of a series of small books on Korean Art, this one is great to have on the bedside table. Each written section on a particular aspect of folk art takes a minute or so to read and is accompanied by several pages of examples and illustrations. Other books in the […]

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Jane Portal: Art under control in North Korea

by Philip Gowman 17 April 2006
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(Reaction Books / British Museum Press, 2005) An interesting, easy to read book cataloguing the different art forms in North Korea. Some of the works, particularly poster art, are on display in the Korean room in the British Museum. The book carefully avoids making judgements about the quality of the work. Link: Review by Ken […]

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Jane Portal: Korea – Art and Archaeology

by Philip Gowman 17 April 2006
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(British Museum Press, 2000) A well-illustrated book with chapters dealing with the art of the different historical periods. This book is on my reading pile and I’ll comment once I’ve read it.

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