Dual Natures in Ceramics: Eight Contemporary Artists from Korea

This exhibition is co-organized by the Asian Art Museum and SFO Museum and is curated by
Hyonjeong Kim Han, Associate Curator of Korean Art, with assistance from Silvia Hari Chang, and
Chihyun Lee at the Asian Art Museum.

FO Museum, San Francisco, U.S.A.
Terminal 3
Departures - Level 2 – Post-Security
May 17, 2014 – February 22, 2015

Roe Kyung Jo

¡°I classify my ceramics from small to big works chronologically. The fish series, the smallest ceramic works, have rhythmical lines like the bodies of swimming fish in the sea. I also tried to describe swimming fish and changes under the ocean through different colors using colored-slip, iron glaze, and cobalt matte glaze. For the bottle series, I used the yeollimun technique to present how red and white clay changes on the surface. Applying this skill, I was able to create textures like those of comb-pattern pottery or murals of the Neolithic period. Using the ash glaze on the surface and the iron glaze inside, I tried to show a contrast of inside and out. Also, my yeollimun bottles emphasize straight lines to show change of patterns, glaze, and texture while traditional yeollimun vessels have curved and smooth lines. I used a spinning wheel for the yeollimun jars and applied the eopdaji technique, which connects the top and bottom parts of a ceramic when fired. This technique was used for traditional Joseon dynasty(1392-1910) moon jars of onggi.¡±
¡°My buncheong works try to show the changing forest from the Spring through Autumn by using the Joseon buncheong technique. I was motivated by the birch forest where the trees come into leaf in Spring, and fall in Autumn. Through the white-slip and overlapped glaze, my buncheong represents changes of clay, glaze, and even fire. My work is part of my everyday surroundings as well as my life¡±

-Roe Kyung Jo
(b.1951 in Seoul, Korea)

Roe was inspired by the elaborate techniques and beauty of Goryeo(918-1392) celadons as well as the stylish forms and pure color of Joseon(1392-1910) whitewares. Using the geometrical shapes of the Joseon dynasty and the intricate techniques of Goryeo celadon, Roe creates playful and animated forms. His ceramics provoke the imagination of viewers with suggestive shapes of animals, such as his Fish series, and also of nature, as seen in his Birch Forest series. Roe¡¯s interests lie primarily in stoneware, particularly in buncheong ceramics (white-slipped stoneware), which flourished during the fifteenth century. His aptness for surface treatment is reflected in each work. The artist¡¯s trademark technique is yeollimun or marbling, which was traditionally used in Goryeo celadon. Roe uses yeollimun on different types of stoneware, giving an effect of movement in his ceramics.