A wave of Korean art, the sound of Turner and Freud goes to the races – the week in art

Exhibition of the week

Hallyu! The Korean Wave
Infectiously bold survey of South Korea’s pop culture that also manages to squeeze in some solid history. Read our five-star review.
V&A, London, from 24 September

Also showing

William Kentridge
Survey of the superb and restless South African artist, theatre and opera creator, and radical. Read our review.
Royal Academy, London, 24 September-11 December

Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals
An Abramović event without the renowned performance artist, who is replaced by volunteers trained in her “Method.”
Modern Art Oxford, 24 September-5 March

Dark Waters: JMW Turner with Lamin Fonfana
Does the great and radical Romantic painter need a soundtrack? Tate Liverpool reckons so.
Tate Liverpool, from 27 September

Horses and Freud
A celebration of Lucian Freud’s passion for the turf, including relics of his gambling.
Ordovas, London, 27 September-16 December

Image of the week

Francis Bacon, known for his brutally visceral paintings of screaming popes and writhing figures, also worked in London as an interior designer. Rare surviving objects from the time – including his rugs, lesser-spotted paintings and this plate/palette – are now up for auction. Read the full article.

What we learned

Brad Pitt’s sculptures, yes his sculptures, are on show … and they’re not awful!

A gigantic See Monster has landed in Weston-super-Mare

Sex Pistols ephemera was a direct influence on the YBAs

A 21,450-page book has gone on sale – the longest volume in the world – and it is unreadable

Jim Moir has retired his Vic Reeves character to concentrate on painting people fighting in dinghies

There’s a fight to preserve outsider artist Ron Gittins’ art-plastered home

Superstar set designer Es Devlin lies awake thinking about Debenhams

King Charles’s attention to British architecture achieved nothing

Potter and painter Derek Andrews and ‘last impressionist’ Ken Howard have died

Masterpiece of the week

Dhratarastra, Guardian-King of the North, from Joseon-dynasty Korea, 1796-1820
This painting on linen is a fantastically powerful, almost florid vision of a fierce being flamboyantly dressed in red and black, warning off any intruders to a Buddhist temple. You can see how, in earlier centuries, Korea’s art creatively mixed with Buddhist styles from its neighbours China and Japan. Yet the tough Guardian-King is playing a lute, its gentle harmonies suggesting his softer side. Korea’s traditional art is supremely spiritual and civilised, expressing Buddhist values in symmetrical, ethereal ceramics and gilded manuscripts as well as this characterful image.
The British Museum, London

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