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  • 9788973008681-Traditional-Korean-Painting-by-Hong-Sun-pyo

Traditional Korean Painting

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Traditional Korean Painting, the 27th book in The Spirit of Korean Cultural Roots series, explores the history of Korean painting. In doing so, it gives an overview of the changes and developments in Korean painting through the ages, from prehistoric to modern times, by looking at the major trends and the philosophical and stylistic characteristics according to period.


From the back cover:

Korea has developed a unique art and culture since prehistoric times. From the rock carvings of prehistoric times to the genre known as korean painting (hangukhwa) today, clear changes have taken places according to the period as attested to by the paintings that remain extant. This book gives an overview of the changes and developments in korean paintings through the ages by looking at the major trends according to periods, and the philosophical and stylistic characteristics.

Traditional Korean Painting can be divided into many different types: rock carvings (petroglyphs), tomb murals, and carvings on craft works, religious paintings such as Buddhist paintings and shamanic paintings, decorative court paintings, folk paintings, documentary paintings of ceremonies and gatherings, portraits, genre paintings, paintings of beautiful women, classical landscapes, realistic (true-view) landscapes, bird-and-flower paintings, animal paintings, flower paintings, paintings of the "four gentlemen " and still lifes.


As such, this book does not just focus on a few genres but covers the whole spectrum, including prehistoric rock carvings, ancient tomb murals, Buddhist painting, shamanic painting, folk painting, court painting, portraits, genre paintings, landscapes and bird-and-flower paintings. The works of Korea's major artists such as Seo Gu-bang, Jeong Seon, Kim Hong-do, Jang Seung-eop and Park Rae-hyeon are introduced in detail to promote greater understanding of Korean painting. 

This book was written from the consciousness that traditional Korean painting has often been written about and discussed from the perspective of others, through modern or Western ideologies such as colonialism, anti-colonialism, nationalism and modernism. Moving away from the development theory inherent in the Western model, the author takes a critical perspective and attempts a new historical systemization of traditional Korean painting. 

ISBN 979-89-7300-868-1

ISBN 979-89-7300-602-1(set)




I. Prehistoric Painting 

Petroglyphs, the Origin of Korean Painting

Craft Designs of the Bronze Age 

II. Painting of the Three Kingdoms Period 

Goguryeo Tomb Murals: Changes and Implications

Painting of the Unified Silla Period 

III. Painting of the Goryeo Period 

The Characteristics of Goryeo Buddhist Painting 

The Emergence of Painting for Appreciation 

New Trends after the Mid-Goryeo Period 

IV. Painting of the First Half of the Joseon Dynasty 

Literati View of Painting and the Establishment of Painting and Calligraphy

as a Hobby

Classical Landscapes and Realistic Landscapes 

New Developments in Portraiture 

The Popularity of Bird-and-Flower Painting 

V. Painting of the Latter Half of the Joseon Dynasty 

The Appreciation of Art and Changing Attitudes toward the Production and Consumption of Painting

The Introduction and Development of New Techniques

The Rise of True-View Landscapes 

The Development of Genre Painting 

Types and Characteristics of Decorative Court Painting 

The Mood of Good Fortune and Extravagance: Boom in Folk Painting 

New Tastes in Flower Painting

VI. Traditional Painting in the Modern Era 

The Dominance of the Owon Style 

The Birth of “Eastern Painting”

The Revival of “Korean Painting”


Data sheet

Publication Year
128*188 mm
258 g
Ewha Womans University Press
Hong Sun-pyo

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