Vietnamese Artists


Vietnamese art has a long and rich history. With the millennium of Chinese domination starting in the 2nd century BC, Vietnamese art undoubtedly absorbed many Chinese influences, which would continue even following independence from China in the 10th century AD. However, Vietnamese art has always retained many distinctively Vietnamese characteristics.

By the 19th century, the influence of French art took hold in Vietnam, having a large hand in the birth of modern Vietnamese art. Contemporary painting is often influenced by the so called, ‘French School’. This term refers to the École des Beaux-Arts established by the French, in Hanoi, in 1925. The contemporary art scene of Vietnam is centered in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The rigid communist rule from 1975 into the early 1990s, reduced most art to communist propaganda. However, the “Doi Moi” enabled artists the chance to express themselves again. Art became more expressive and daring, and many promising talents emerged. Vietnamese artists are very technically advanced in many art media, lacquer included  Artwork is usually executed in traditional media such as oil, gouache, watercolor, and lacquer o which is the most traditional and characteristic medium for this country. Lacquer painting is a painfully staking arduous and time consuming process. The sap of the lacquer tree is extracted, mixed with pigments and solvents, and then applied to a flat piece of board previously coated in layers of clay and cloth. The result is a durable and characteristically glossy surface. Lacquer can be glossy and mat. Lacquer work has a long tradition in Vietnam. However, young Vietnamese artists have taken this traditional art form and transformed it into a highly innovative and interesting genre.

Although most art forms, during the strict communist rule from 1975 into the early 1990s, was reduced to communist propaganda, the doi moi in turn gave artists the chance to express themselves again. Art overall became more daring, and many promising talents have emerged since then.  Artwork is usually executed in traditional media such as oil, gouache, watercolor, and lacquer, the most traditional and characteristic medium for this region. Lacquer painting is a time consuming process requiring time and patience. The sap of the lacquer tree is extracted, mixed with pigments and solvents, and then applied to a flat piece of board previously coated in layers of clay and cloth. The result is a durable and characteristically glossy surface Lacquer work has a long tradition in Vietnam. However, young Vietnamese artists have taken this traditional art form and transformed it into a highly innovative and interesting genre.




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