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Collage artists depict women cut from a different cloth

Update: March, 12/2013 - 10:20

by Thu Anh

Brother and sister: Chi Em, a paper collage work by Lien Huong

(VNS) Three pioneers of paper collage "paintings" are exhibiting their works in HCM City.

Each of the 22 works in Women and Love are about women with an underlying theme of admiration and romanticism.

Women have been amateur artist Lien Huong's subjects since she took up the art three years ago, because she finds them "an unlimited source of inspiration".

Her art "is like a woman who sees the world with pure eyes".

"Through my paintings, I can praise the world and its people, especially women and love," says the 57-year-old artist.

Huong loved painting and tried various materials before settling on paper collage since it "creates softness for paintings", and, moreover, would be "unique".

Huong has five works at the exhibition, including Chi Em (Sister and Young Brother) and Duong Xa (The Far Road), both bright pieces showcasing a romantic world full of passion.

Chi Em portrays a middle-aged man rowing a small boat with an old woman. Both their faces are full of feeling and emotions.

"I create Chi Em to highlight my father's love for his older sister, a rural woman living in a poor village in Ca Mau Province," Huong says.

"After 1975, my father, a revolutionary who had moved to the North, came back to Ca Mau after 25 years away from home.

"On the reunion day, my father cried and hugged his older sister. He told us he never forget that day. "

If art should reflect political or social tension, as some critics say, Chi Em hits the bull's-eye.

Huong finds a palette of cold and light colours is the best way to show her admiration for women.

In Duong Xa, she uses white, grey, and brown to depict a woman flower vendor on a long, lonely road.

"I have love and admiration for Vietnamese mothers and sisters, who are prepared to do anything to ensure their children and husbands' happiness," she says.

Ngoc Uyen of the Mekong Art Club turned her creative eye to paper collages because she "wanted to explore new passions through a different medium".

Her works Hoa Dai Ngan Tay Bac (Mountain Flowers) and Khuc Giao Duyen (Romantic Dance) portray her female subject in vivid red, orange, and yellow that are somehow romantic.

Unlike Huong, renowned Vinh Long Province-based artist Lam Chieu Dong's pictures featuring landscapes and forests are cheerful and vibrant.

"I was overwhelmed after seeing the collages by the three artists," Tran Thi Man, a visitor, said.

"Their works are lively and colourful."

The artists sketch their painting idea on paper before cutting pieces of paper and putting them together to create the image.

"The works looked like oil paintings from a distance," Man added.

The exhibition, on at the Women's Cultural House, 192-194 Ly Chinh Thang Street, District 3, runs until March 27. — VNS


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