Minjung Kim - New Now London Thursday, July 13, 2023 | Phillips
  • “The scope of her oeuvre, her decision to focus exclusively on paper, ink and fire, throughout her three-decade practice seems to have opened up almost inexhaustible artistic possibilities. Like the Oulipians or the minimalists before her, it seems that constraint and repetition are precisely what fuel her creative drive.”
    —Lorena Munoz Alonso


    Minjung Kim's Story is a meditative work from the artist's fascinating Story series. Including pieces executed in exhilarating colour alongside others in more discrete tones, this body of work draws on artisanal craftsmanship, philosophy, and skills stemming from Kim's home country – Korea. Each sheet of "Hanji" (Korean mulberry paper) was ‘cut out, treated with fire’ from incense, and juxtaposed ‘on another sheet, until the surface was saturated with luxuriant, flower-like patterns or subjected to the rigour of geometrical order’.i The work does not depict traces of a human affair but rather an intense impression of Korean craft and artistry – the carefully managed sheets of Hanji, which were taught to Kim by Masters of Art from the age of ten.


    Born in Korea and later moving to Italy, Kim studied fine art at the accomplished Hong Ik University in Seoul and Accademia di Brera in Milan. She began exhibiting her work for her fellow students and professors at university, and it was when a gallery in Milan showed her work in their window renowned collectors noticed her talent. Since then, Minjung Kim has become one of the defining artists of this decade and has spent the past three decades mastering the ancient Korean art techniques explored in her works. Whether it's tragedy or joy, Minjung Kim's works reflect her state of mind at the time of the creation; shaped by time and intense concentration, the physical and material essence of her work is perfectly balanced against more ceremonial and spiritual elements.



    i Enrico Lunghi, ‘Interview Minjung Kim’, in Paper, Ink and Fire: After the Process, exh. cat., Gallery Hyundai, Seoul, 2017, online.

    • Provenance

      Patrick Heide Contemporary Art, London
      Acquired from the above by the present owner



stamped with the artist's signature lower left
watercolour, ink and paper collage on mulberry Hanji paper
104.4 x 154.3 cm (41 1/8 x 60 3/4 in.)
Executed in 2007.​

Full Cataloguing

£35,000 - 55,000 ‡♠

Sold for £40,640

Contact Specialist

Charlotte Gibbs
Associate Specialist, Head of New Now
+44 20 7901 7993

New Now

London Auction 13 July 2023