Oh Se-Yeol is a celebrated Korean contemporary artist. He has been endlessly creating works on canvases for the past 60 years, and he recently received attention in the art world. Oh Se-Yeol works in a labor-intensive technique; painting numerous layers over the canvas and scraping off the surface with a sharp object repeatedly, to understand the lives of laborers and console the exhausted contemporary humanity. By steadily making appearances in major auctions such as Christie’s and Sotheby’s, Oh’s works suggest Minjung art’s market possibility.
Oh Se-Yeol is a representative contemporary artist that has a unique child-like ambience. He usually paints on canvases, but he uses wooden panels as well. He uses various materials such as oil paint, acrylic paint, conte, gouache, etc. and works in a labor-intensive technique; painting numerous layers over the canvas and scraping off the surface with a sharp object repeatedly. He records insignificant numbers on his canvas like a child’s doodle, and places insignificant objets on top. He does not make sketches or elaborately plan beforehand for his works, and makes spontaneous decisions as he works. He uses the ‘anti-Western traditional painting’ technique, in which he uses oil paint, with practically no oil mixed in.
Born in Seoul, Oh Se-Yeol attended Seorabol Art College in 1969 and received his M.F.A. in Chung-Ang University, the Graduate School of Art in 1974. Oh has held solo exhibitions in various institutions such as Baudoin Lebon Gallery (Paris, 2015), Pontone Gallery (London, 2016), Hakgojae Gallery (Seoul, 2017) and more. He also participated in group exhibitions in institutions such as National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Gwacheon, Korea, 1988), Seoul Arts Center (Seoul, 1994), Dubang Contemporary Space (Taipei, 2007) and more. His works are in collections such as National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, and Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation.