Exhibition unites two contemporary painters

November 14, 2017 - 09:00

A new exhibition at the Hà Nội Museum features work by two painters whose contrasting themes and styles portray the world’s diversity.

In motion: Young Ladies by Lê Văn Thìn.
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — A new exhibition at the Hà Nội Museum features work by two painters whose contrasting themes and styles portray the world’s diversity.

Titled Du và Dội (Lilt and Fierceness), the exhibition showcases more than 300 artworks by Lê Văn Thìn and Ngô Xuân Bính created with various materials: lacquer, oil, dó (poohnah) paper and mixed media.

Opening on Saturday, this is the biggest contemporary art exhibition the Hà Nội Museum has ever had. It’s also the biggest exhibition in Bính’s career with 200 artworks of different materials and scales.

The exhibition aims to bridge the concepts of traditionalism and modernity in order to demonstrate temporal continuity in the human experience.

At work: Artist Ngô Xuân Bính with a painting at his home. — Photo baomoi.com

The exhibit is a chance for audiences to see and appreciate artworks by the two outstanding artists, as well as to preserve and promote Vietnamese contemporary art to local and international audiences.

“Thìn and I find different inspirations and themes to work,” Bính said. “We named the exhibition Du and Dội in which Du (lilting and tuneful) includes Thìn’s paintings and Dội (fierce) are my paintings. Together we describe the diversified beauty of life.”

Art critic Trần Trung Chính remarked that perhaps the journey of rhythm is the major theme that imbues most of Thìn’s lacquer paintings.

“The streets, houses and even the crowds of women in his paintings are the moments of silence which are all arranged to perform the journey of rhythm,” he said. “Visitors may hear the rhythm of crackling branches, the stillness of seashell patterns, the stirring eggshell inlay of lily and the gentle breaths of the white lotus in his paintings.”

Vivid: Thăng Hoa (Sublimation) by Ngô Xuân Bính.

Meanwhile, Bính’s paintings consist of his fierce energy, said Chính.

“The shapeless colour forms provoke a stirring in each spectator of each painting,” he said.

Bính was born in 1957 in the central province of Nghệ An and lived in Russia for over 10 years. He is also known as the creator of Nhất Nam martial arts school and a practitioner of Vietnamese traditional medicine. In recent years, he has become one of the country’s most well-known artists, with exhibitions in Minsk and Moscow. He also received many international art awards. He is one of two foreign people given the title of Honourary Member by the Russian Academy of Arts.

Thìn was born in 1952 and currently works as a lecturer at the Hà Nội Open University. He is famous for his white lacquer paintings using silver leaves, egg shells and seashells. Artist Lý Trực Sơn has said that his recent works, which honour the beauty of nature and humans, are “very unique and distinctive” with a style that “absolutely cannot be duplicated”.

The exhibition will run until February 27 at the Hà Nội Museum, Phạm Hùng Street, Nam Từ Liêm District. — VNS