solo show
July 3 - August 18, 2020
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Piramide Building, 1F, 6-6-9 Roppongi, Minato-ku

Tokyo Japon

Perrotin Tokyo is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Korean artist Lee Bae. Known as the artist of charcoal, he has been exploring various facets and properties of the material for thirty years. With his experimental monochromatic works, he is referred to as one of the most prominent figures of the post-Dansaekhwa movement.

ペロタン東京はこのたび、韓国人アーティスト、リー・ベー(李英培)の個展を開催いたします。 “炭のアーティスト”として知られ、30年にわたり炭が持つ多様な側面や性質を探求してきました。そのモノクロマチックな実験的作品により、リーは“ポスト単色画”アーティストとして 最も著名なアーティストの一人と称されています。

Lee Bae (courtesy of the artist and Musée Guimet)

In Landscape, we notice that the hard and heavy motif collapses as it collides with the void. As heaviness and lightness, presence and absence, representation and the un-representable, pleasure and pain confront each other, the sublimity flares like sparks of fire.


In Issu du feu, each piece of charcoal reflects light differently, like the stained glass in a gothic cathedral. Lee tightly places pieces of charcoal on canvas, binds them, and polishes the surface to enable the black matter to reflect light.

《Issu du feu》では、炭の欠片ひとつひとつが、まるでゴシック様式の大聖教のステンドグラスのように異なる光を反射します。リーはキャンバス上に炭の欠片を密着、結束させ、表面を磨き上げることで、この漆黒の物質が光を反射するようにしています。

Lee draws the motif using charcoal powder and medium mixture, dries it, then superposes it with another layer of the same motif on top of the first, which he repeats several layers.


I’ve been working with charcoal for nearly 30 years and yet, I still think there is more I can do with it.


— Lee Bae リー・ベー

The title, “the sublime charcoal light,” combines charcoal (the Moon House) and the empty space (the moonlight). In Lee’s works, these two elements constantly coexist and interact with each other: as charcoal and light in Issu du feu, and as charcoal and empty space in Landscape and Untitled.

本展タイトルである“the sublime charcoal light”(崇高な炭の光)とは、つまり、炭(“月の家”)と余白(月光)から成っています。リーの作品にはこれらの二要素(《Issu du feu》では炭と光、《Landscape》と《Untitled》では炭と余白)が常に共存し、相互作用しています。

Asian culture loves to master the mind and sets great importance by spirituality. It also leaves room for intuition. In the same way, I always try to combine different aspects: the mental and the sensorial, lucidity and intuition. You can do all that with black.

アジアの文化では、心を鍛え、スピリチュアルであることを重要視します。そこにはまた、直感も共存します。同じように、私は常に異なる側面を組み合わせるようにしています:精神と感覚、明晰さと直観。 それらすべてを黒で表現することができます。

— Lee Bae リー・ベー

Born in 1956 in Cheongdo, South Korea
Lives and works between Paris, France and Seoul, South Korea

Born in Cheongdo, South Korea in 1956, Lee’s works have been the subject of solo exhibitions at museums and institutions worldwide, including Wilmotte Foundation, Venice, Italy; Fondation Maeght, Saint-Paul de Vence, France; Paradise Art Space, Incheon, South Korea; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Vannes, France; and Musée Guimet, Paris, France. Lee’s works are included in public collections, notably the National Museum of Contemporary Art (MMCA), Gwacheon, South Korea; Seoul Museum of Art (SEMA), Seoul, South Korea; Leeum-Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea; Fondation Maeght, Saint-Paul de Vence, France; Musée Guimet, Paris, France; Musée Cernuschi, Paris, France; Privada Allegro Foundation, Madrid, Spain; and Baruj Foundation, Barcelona, Spain.

More about the artist
SHOP : Plus de Lumière (2018)
List of artworks