Western Influence in Korean Painting of the Late Joseon Period
|Name in Latin Alphabet:||Yi Song-mi|
|Nationality:||Republic of Korea|
|Affiliation:||The Academy of Korean Studies|
The late Joseon period in Korea is characterized by two seemingly opposed trends of culture: inquiry into things Korean and investigation into things Western. Western civilization and culture which the Koreans were first exposed to by way of China appeared to be almost a “shock” to them. From the Three Kingdoms period on, Korean culture developed its uniqueness while receiving continuous stimuli and influence from the continental Chinese culture. But the Koreans never considered it “foreign.” In their writings, Korean scholars of the eighteenth century, however, expressed their shocks when they saw the life-like Western-style paintings in the Jesuit church in Yanjing. It was also during this period that the Koreans developed a distinctly Korean landscape painting called “true-view landscapes,” which depicted uniquely Korean scenery based on actual observation, a practice of Western origin. This lecture will examine how the contact with Western art was reflected in Korean paintings of the late Joseon period in the areas of portrait, figure, animal, landscape, and chaekkeori (scholars’ paraphernalia) paintings.