Entrancing and contemplative, Umberblue is emblematic of Yun Hyongkeun’s distinctive oeuvre that earned him recognition as one of the most prominent Dansaekhwa artists. Born in 1928 in Korea, Yun developed his signature method in the late 1960s to early 1970s whilst experimenting with the Western medium of oil. He added layer upon layer of paint onto raw linen, often applying new pigments before the last layer had dried. He would then dilute the pigment with turpentine solvent, which is absorbed at a faster rate and which allows the mixture to seep into the fibres of the support, staining or encroaching into the unpainted areas. The resulting forms float within the liminal pictorial spaces as accumulative records of his process, invoking meditations on the organic properties of water, paint, and the passage of time. The present work was created in 1977, shortly after Yun’s move to New York, where he encountered for the first time the work of Mark Rothko. Around this time, Yun’s works also deeply impressed Donald Judd, who detected in Yun’s works a “palpable presence of unique spiritual quality [...] of a kind lacking in his own paintings or those of his contemporaries” (Yun Hyongkeun: Selected Works 1972-2007, PKM Gallery, Seoul, p. 17).