Yun Hyong-keun On View at David Zwirner

Paris, 7 January — 23 February, 2023

This is the first solo exhibition of his work to be hosted in Paris since 2006, as well as the third solo exhibition of his works from David Zwirner since 2016. The show will feature both Yun’s paintings and previously unseen works on hanji (Korean mulberry paper) that were inspired by his residency in Paris.

The exhibition is held in collaboration with Seoul-based PKM Gallery which primarily represents Yun Hyong-keun’s estate. A catalogue published by David Zwirner Books will also be available to accompany the show.

Artist Yun Hyong-keunDate January 7 — February 23, 2023
Gallery David Zwirner Gallery ParisLocation 108, rue Vieille du Temple, Paris
Yun Hyong-keun, Umber-Blue ’80, 1980, Oil on linen, 100 x 65.5 cm
© David Zwirner
Yun Hyong-keun On View at David Zwirner
Yun Hyong-keun, Umber-Blue, 1979, Oil on linen, 52.8 x 80 cm, © David Zwirner

About the exhibition

Featuring never-before-seen paintings and works on hanji (Korean mulberry paper) from 1979 to 1984, this presentation sheds light on an influential period in the artist’s career. These years, which followed Yun’s extraordinary sojourn in Paris from 1980 to 1982, were highly formative for him, during which he was able to freely express himself after being subject to persecution and censorship in his homeland.

Yun was severely punished for taking part in the student movement at Seoul National University in the late 1940s, and in 1956 he was briefly imprisoned due to his political views. Furthermore, he was blacklisted by the South Korean law enforcement system from 1973 until 1980, a period which marked the end of Japan’s colonial rule and the beginning of an oppressive military dictatorship. As a result of being barred from exhibiting his work in his own country, Yun traveled to Paris in 1978 to show his work at the Secondes Rencontres Internationales d’Art Contemporain at the Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais.

In a reaction to the brutal Gwangju Uprising of May 1980, during which hundreds of people were slain for protesting General Chun Doo-hwan’s martial law government, Yun chose to relocate his family to Paris in order to seek a much-needed respite from the political turmoil. While there, Yun engaged with fellow Korean expatriate artists.

His meditative works on hanji, imbued with the disquietude of the Gwangju Uprising, extended his already established visual vocabulary. This show marks both Yun’s first solo exhibition in Paris since 2006 and the third solo exhibition of his work to be held in David Zwirner’s Paris gallery since 2016. It is in collaboration with PKM Gallery, Seoul, which primarily represents Yun Hyong-keun’s estate. A catalogue will be published by David Zwirner Books to accompany the exhibition.


© Courtesy via David Zwirner Gallery, Press Release, View Location On Maps

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