Ecriture, a French word meaning “writing”, has been a long reoccurring theme in Park’s works. In 1983, Park Seo-bo started to incorporate the use of Hanji paper. Hanji is a traditional Korean paper made primarily from mulberry bark. Park will soak the Hanji paper in water for weeks to achieve a moldable state of the paper then applied layers of Hanji paper on the canvas with gesso in between layers. During this process, the artist will use various types of tools to mold and sculpt the paper into a desired visual effect. This process will be repeated indefinitely until the artist feels a specific canvas has been completed.
In the 1990’s, under the influence of a few western masters, Park started to bring pigments into the painting. One visible instance is a series of black Ecriture paintings primarily inspired by Pierre Soulages (b. 1919). In this series of black Ecriture, light and surface texture is a brand new subject from the previous white monochrome works. Through the working technique, the matte paper surface presents itself in different sculptural contents. The technique of molding layers of paper and incorporating black pigment gives the paintings an important new quality – the incorporation of light. In this instance, how the canvas surfaces interact with light absorbed and reflected is drastically different from the previous monochrome paintings. By adding a dark pigmentation the artist invites the viewer to experience the movement of the painting from different angle created by the link of light and the painting surface.
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