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Renown for her techniques in realist painting with thirty or more layers of pigmented clay, Heesoo Lee addresses intricate human conditions through vibrant iterations of the natural world. Depicting poppy flowers, aspen trees and irises, Lee accentuates light and shadow as a metaphor for experiencing durations of time, human connection and personal identity. Lee embeds this imagery within the ceramic forms, animating details with a human-likeness and transferring such lively depictions into curious, new realities of an outside environment.

Poppies I, porcelain, 2016

Poppies II, porcelain, 2016

Lee forms her work with both porcelain and white stoneware. She meticulously applies multiple, thin layers of color, creating high levels of uncertainty as the pigments react and interact in the kiln firing. The reward Lee experiences from such risk-taking reiterates the fluctuation between lightness and stability present in her work.

Aspen Bowls and Forest Vessels, porcelain, 2016

Aspen Bowl, porcelain, 2016

Aspen Cups I, II, III, porcelain, 2016

Heesoo Lee was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea earning her Bachelors of Art in Art from Ewha University in 1996. Lee began a full-time studio practice in Berkley, CA in 2000 later relocating to Maui, HI. In 2013, she was an Artist-in-Residence at the Archie Bray Foundation for Ceramic Arts in Helena, MT returning for a year-long residency in 2014. Lee has been featured in Ceramics Monthly and her work was recently part of the 2016 AKAR Design Yunomi and Americano Invitational in Iowa City.


Aspen Stool, porcelain, 2016

Aspen Vases I, II, porcelain, 2016

In Dream Bowl, porcelain, 2016


Blossom Vases, white stoneware, 2016



Blossom Yunomi I, II, III, white stoneware, 2016


Blossom Sculpture, white stoneware, 2016

Press Release

Heesoo Lee in Conversation

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Artist Website

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