HCM CITY — Rare prints composed by world famous Spanish artist Francisco de Goya y Lucientes between 1810-20 are on display for the second time in Viet Nam at an exhibition which has opened at the HCM City Fine Arts Museum.
The art of war: Ngoan Cuong Trong Chien Dau (A Heroic Fighting Spirit) by Co Tan Long Chau. Prints by Spanish painter Goya are on display in HCM City with 205 paintings and sketches on the French and American wars. — VNS Photo Van Dat
The 33 etchings are from Goya's series Disaster of War, which is a collection of painful scenes from Spain's War of Independence (1808-14) against the French.
The etchings were exhibited in Viet Nam for the first time in Ha Noi in October 2008. The works were brought to the Viet Nam Fine Arts Museum by American Dr Hans Guggenheim, who came to the country to exhibit 46 prints from his personal collection by the Spanish artist to celebrate the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Viet Nam and Spain.
In 2009, Guggenheim donated 33 of the prints to the Viet Nam Fine Arts Museum. The etchings showcase Spain's struggle for liberation against Napoleon's troops, which has also suffered from the toils of war.
The 85-year-old man believed the museum would provide a wonderful context for the Goya prints, since Vietnamese artists have traditionally depicted their own nation's struggles for independence in their art works.
Hanging alongside Goya's pieces are 205 paintings and sketches completed during the French and American wars by Vietnamese artists such as Huynh Phuong Dong, Thai Ha, Le Hong Hai, Co Tan Long Chau.
While the etchings show the pain, sorrow and death suffered by Spanish people during their struggle, exhibition goers will also see the encouraged and optimistic spirits of soldiers in paintings by the Vietnamese artists, says Ma Thanh Cao, acting director of the HCM City Fine Arts Museum.
The exhibit opening was celebrated by the HCM City Fine Arts Association and the Viet Nam Fine Arts Association to mark the 35th anniversary of the liberation of the South (April 30) and the 1,000th anniversary of capital Ha Noi.
The exhibit can be enjoyed though April 15 at the HCM City Fine Arts Museum, 97A Pho Duc Chinh Street, District 1. — VNS