Artist Lee Seung Hee
Medium: Ceramic, glaze, cyanide
Dimensions: 108H x 23W in
Original Artwork Price: $30,000 (4 stems) including base
Color Options: Red, Green, Black
The Bamboo Series
In Asian culture, bamboo has long been identified with such virtues as modesty, integrity, and resilience. Recreating bamboo that is flexible in nature with the fragile and inflexible material, Seunghee creates a tension between natural and man-made. Such contrasts reflect a tension within every man. To create his imposing Bamboo ceramic installations, Lee first sculpts individual “bamboo joints” from clay, then fires them one by one in a kiln, and finally assembles them into groups of freestanding tree trunks. For the most ambitious versions of his bamboo grove installations, which feature ceramic bamboo tree trunks reaching almost 14 feet in height, as many as 10,000 ceramic joints may be needed. The colors that Lee chooses for his bamboo works consciously recall the classic hues of Korean ceramics: white, celadon green, black, and reddish-brown. The artist has made entire “bamboo groves” in black ceramic, with striking results that suggest a traditional ink landscape come to life.