: Seung-pyo Hong
Seung-pyo Hong’s artistic vision originates from his childhood encounters with the Chinese art of calligraphy. From this initial encounter he began to produce work through a hybridized practice, drawing on the pictorial nature of Chinese calligraphy to transition into the realm of non-figurative painting. Hong uses oversized characters painted with expressive brush strokes, merging language with image so that the letters take on the visual appearance of their meanings. For example, in one painting, the Chinese characters in the title refer to a legendary elephant, while a stylized and abstracted elephant making its trek across a river may be discerned in the center of the painting, composed of the very characters which refer to it. The use of calligraphy and the repetition of Chinese characters imbue the paintings with a sense of rhythm and order which is appreciable even by those less versed in the meaning of Chinese characters. Born in South Korea, Seung-pyo received his B.F.A. in painting from Daejin University in Pocheon, and his M.F.A. from Hongik University in Seoul. Seung-pyo has had one-person and group exhibitions at the Korean Art Festival, Seoul, in 2011; Gallery IS, Seoul, in 2012; Kunstart 12 Biennial Art Fair for Emerging Contemporary Artists, Bolzano, in 2012; and Shin Gallery, New York, 2013. Hong is the recipient of several awards including the National Exhibition of Korean Art Calligraphy prize in 1990, 1991, 1993, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004.