Art Term

Danseakhwa: The Korean monochrome movement

This was a formidable movement formed in Korea in the 1950s in an effort to reconcile the influence of Western modernism on Korean artistic culture

Lee Ufan at work in his Paris studio, February 2014

Stylistically the artists of Danseakhwa rejected realism and formalism for modernist abstraction, choosing to paint only in monochrome and in a style that emphasised the flatness of the canvas.

The movement highlighted the post-war struggle within Korea over national identity, belonging and tradition. By using repetitive patterns and gestures in their pictures they attempted to create an aesthetic style that was universal and belonged to no one.

Artists associated with Danseakhwa are Ha Chong-hyun, Hur Hwang, Lee Dong-Youb, Lee Ufan, Park Seo-bo, and Yun Hyong-keun.