This is Yi Am

By Gwylym Owen

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Yi Am (in Hangul:이암, in Hanja:李巖, 1499~?) was a painter during the mid-Joseon Dynasty. He was the grandson of the 4th son of Sejong the Great.

His paintings are well-known for exhibiting the artist’s own style, as certain from the unchangeable Chinese style of the Song dynasty. The artist created many portraits, including the portrait of King Jungjong of Joseon.

Several museums in South Korea have housed his paintings. His paintings portray animals in a creative manner, which has influenced progressive artists Kim Sik (1579-1662) and Byeon Sang-byeok. It is said that Yi Am drew flowers, animals and little insects by the method of maximizing his observation.

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