Paintings of lotus on display at old villa downtown

June 28, 2024 - 09:43
Paintings of lotus on display at old villa downtown

Art collector Thúy Anh has introduced a collection of lotus paintings and hosted an art talk about the beauty of lotus in Vietnamese culture, attracting the participation of many artists and cultural researchers in Hanoi.

The collection entitled Hồng Sen (Pink Lotus) comprises 18 paintings of famous contemporary painter such as Bình Nhi, Phạm An Hải, Hải Kiên and Đào Liên Hương.

Art collector Thúy Anh and painter Lương Xuân Đoàn at the art talk on Wednesday in Hà Nội. — VNS Photo Sơn Tùng

Expressing his knowledge about the lotus, cultural researcher Trần Trọng Dương said that the lotus has existed in Vietnamese culture for thousands of years. Lotus appeared in poetry, architecture and fine arts. From the carved plaques of the Lý-Trần dynasties (10th-13th centuries), to the sculpted lotus-shaped foundation on village communal houses, patterns on fabrics, and fine arts all have lotus motifs. There are hundreds of lotus motifs in Vietnamese culture.

"The lotus symbol spreads throughout the cultures of both East Asia and South Asia. In South Asian culture, the lotus is a central symbol, associated with that which is purest, unblemished, unsullied by anything. The characteristics of the lotus is described as absolute purity. Lotus grows from mud but never smells of mud. The lotus thus became a symbol of purity in Buddhism and Confucianism,” he said.

Researcher Dương hopes that in the future there will be a research project covering all lotus decorative motifs in traditional Vietnamese art.

West Lake Lotus by painter Hải Kiên. VNS Photo Sơn Tùng

In her opinion, writer/painter Trần Thị Trường who has many paintings of lotus said in Southeast Asia, many countries have lotus flowers, but Vietnam has a special feature that every region has lotus.

"Along the length of the country, lotus everywhere is beautiful, every species is beautiful, both the flowers and leaves, even when the lotus withers, it is still charming. Like many Vietnamese people, I naturally love lotus since I was born, there was a lotus in my mother's lullaby and when I grew up, I loved the lotus with my personal intuition," writer Trường exclaimed.

Visitors contemplate the beauty of lotus. VNS Photo Sơn Tùng

Collector Thúy Anh confided that she was born and raised in Hanoi so she loves lotus in different regions of the country. She collected 18 lotus paintings also from her love for lotus.

"The lotus is a symbol of a good heart and a bright mind. Not only the color but the fragrance of this flower is also very pure, guiding people towards humane aspirations. That's why I want to spread its meaning,” said Anh.

Before the exhibition in Hà Nội, Anh introduced the collection in Paris (France). Lotus paintings by contemporary Vietnamese artists appearing next to áo dài (traditional long robe) and conical hats have created an unforgettable highlight, honouring the beauty of the country and people of Vietnam.

According to painter Lương Xuân Đoàn, Chairman of Vietnam Fine Arts Association, painting exhibitions are often organised by artists, groups of artists or an art agency, rarely a collector initiates the organisation of exhibitions or art talks. Thus, it can be considered that collector Anh's activities are rare and need to be encouraged and spread.

Participants commented that the discussions have opened a good precedent, helping collectors, intellectuals and artists understand each other better, from there, many ideas can appear, bringing positive values ​​to life.

Previously, collector Thúy Anh organised many meaningful talks and exhibitions such as: Streets and Flowers (2021) with the desire to dispel the gloomy atmosphere of the COVID-29 pandemic; or Vẻ Đẹp Hồng Tâm (Beauty from heart) (2023). Many works have been auctioned to raise funds for charity.

The exhibition of lotus paintings will run until June 30 at the heritage villa of 49 Trần Hưng Đạo Street, Hà Nội. VNS