One stroke

Jong Chang Mo, who paints still-lives employing “one stroke” technique, is one of the most prominent North Korean painters. His work produces an unique impression of freshness and mastership. Still-lives embody a traditional philosophical paradigm about the unity of great and small things. In 2010 another prominent painter Son U Yong, a medal winner at the yearly Asian Art exhibition held in Beijing, died much too young at the age of 65. Fortunately many of his works are represented in the Kaesong Collection.

Young artists

Quests for an individual artistic idiom are characteristics of the young Pyongyang artists painting in oil on canvas. They exploit both traditional and modern art media. Landscapes done by Rim Ryul and Tak Hyo Yeon remind of impressionists studies pulsating with light, moods and brush work. The painters’ tools, brushes and palette-knives leave the texture of brush-strokes are spreading the texture of brush-strokes in different directions. Such artists are particularly attentive to chiaroscuro on the surface of objects, the thickness of mist, the glimmering of lanterns in the darkness, the changing seasons and day-and-nighttime.

City life and portraits

The works of Choi Jung Gyun, Han Yong Chol, Ri Tong Man and Tak Hyo Yeon attract a lot of attention due to the quests for their own idiom and the subject of city-life. The masters of North Korean contemporary painting Ri Tong Jun and Yong Song Gun are representatives of realistic portrait painting.

For all the artists check out our list of artists.