THE FAB­RIC OF LIFE

The Korean artist Seulgi Lee finds beauty in do­mes­tic­ity with her bold, mul­ti­coloured tex­tiles and rugs

Harper's Bazaar (UK) - - Contents - By TERESA FITZHERBERT

Colour­ful wo­ven cre­ations by the Korean artist Seulgi Lee

It seems fit­ting that when Seulgi Lee de­scribes what art means to her, she refers to a hum­ble piece of crock­ery. ‘Art is like a bowl that con­tains life,’ says the Seoul-born, Paris-based artist, who uses lan­guage, vi­brant colour and el­e­gant shapes to in­stil new mean­ing in do­mes­tic ob­jects. Hand­wo­ven bas­kets and tra­di­tional Korean rugs form the ba­sis of her solo show, which opens at Gallery Hyundai this month. Sewn by lo­cal ar­ti­san weavers from Tongyeong, the strik­ing tex­tiles de­pict Korean proverbs in ab­stract visual forms. Her work Show a Duck’s Foot (mean­ing ‘to tell a lie’) is rep­re­sented by an or­ange di­a­mond, sliced with yel­low, sur­rounded by blocks of ma­genta, green, red and blue. Beau­ti­ful in iso­la­tion, it be­comes all the more mes­meris­ing when you read its hid­den mes­sage.

The dyes are par­tic­u­larly im­por­tant to Lee, who be­lieves that ‘colours are spir­i­tual’. Her bold palette has also al­lowed her to flit be­tween the worlds of art and fash­ion. Her­mès com­mis­sioned her to make a col­lec­tion of limited-edi­tion cash­mere quilts in 2017 and next spring, one of her car­pets will fea­ture along­side seven oth­ers cre­ated for Ikea by de­sign­ers such as Vir­gil Abloh, Louis Vuit­ton’s artis­tic di­rec­tor of menswear. The in­te­ri­ors giant launched the Art Rug ini­tia­tive as a way of bring­ing art out of gal­leries and mu­se­ums and into the home. ‘I am very ex­cited by this pro­ject,’ says Lee. ‘If art makes peo­ple en­joy life more, then why not?’

‘The Com­mit­tee of Happy Si­lencers’ is at Gallery Hyundai (www.gallery­hyundai.com) from 15 Novem­ber to 23 De­cem­ber. Ikea Art Rugs will be avail­able from spring 2019.

Above: Seulgi Lee’s ‘Spilled Wa­ter = Too Late’ (2018). Above right: her ‘Fan the Burn­ing House = Make the Sit­u­a­tionWorse’ (2018)

Left: ‘Re­pair the Cow­shed Af­ter Los­ing the Cow = Too Late’ (2018). Right:‘The Young Leaf is Yel­low = Wrong Be­gin­ning’ (2018)

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