Mark Yang Painter South Korea Asian Men Paintings Intimate Wrestling Homoerotic Gay
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August 23, 2021
Art
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Men Can Be Straight and Still Intimate with Each Other: That is Mark Yang’s Message

Matisse meets K-pop: this is how Mark Yang describes his style. ⁠

Born and raised in South-Korea, Mark comes from a culture where it is common for men to be intimate with each other. Fascinated by male nudity and physical intimacy, the young artist depicts nude Asian men touching each other and wrestling in his paintings. ⁠

It is not too surprising that his creations are often interpreted as homoerotic, especially form a Western point of view, even though Mark does not intend them to be. Both in art and in real life, men touching and being close to each other is often associated with gayness. The artist wants to challenge this notion:⁠

‘I think it’s interesting that if I paint a woman, people will be like, “Why are you objectifying women?” And if I’m painting men, the question becomes ‘Why are you painting men if you’re straight?’ It made more sense to me to paint men. I’m a male, in a man’s body. I feel like all painting is, is painting yourself’.

This also raises the question of why so many straight men depict nude female bodies in their works (a vast topic!). But for now, let us admire Mark’s paintings.

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