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Vietnamese artists show optimism at exhibition in US

Update: September, 25/2018 - 08:00
Poster of the exhibition comprises artworks by Nguyễn Thế Sơn and Nguyễn Kim Tố Lan.
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — The life of Vietnamese people is reflected through contemporary artworks on display at the exhibition held in the US.

Nguyễn Thế Sơn and Nguyễn Kim Tố Lan are showcasing their works at the exhibition Light as pink feather, held at the Sprinkler Factory in Massachusetts (the US) from now to September 30.

In the exhibition, Lan and Sơn reflect on the resilient, problem-solving attitude characteristic of the Vietnamese people through their works of photography, drawing, video and installation.

Sơn’s art focuses on everyday social and political realities in contemporary Việt Nam and how people creatively work around them. Lan’s works explore the moon as a longtime symbol for human aspirations and ideals, from the famous Vietnamese folktale of the lonely man and his magical tree on the moon — commemorated in the annual mid-autumn festival in Việt Nam — to the human dream of reaching the moon that was actually achieved by Neil Armstrong in 1969, in contrast with the major worldwide protests and social upheavals that also marked that year.

The exhibition looks at the grace, beauty, and humour that people find in the world in spite of its many difficulties.

Light as pink feather is a Vinglish (Vietnamese and English) phrase from the Vietnamese saying Nhẹ tựa lông hồng, which describes a can-do attitude and optimism in the face of life’s struggles, no matter how complicated or dire the situation.

Lan is a multidisciplinary, conceptual artist in HCM City. She helped found Sao La Collective, an independent art collective in the southern region of Việt Nam. Community-oriented, she and fellow artists have been working towards a multi-form “art” approach and creating more public engagement in everyday spaces.

Sơn is a visual artist from Hà Nội. He studied photography in Beijing and works as a professor of fine arts in Hà Nội. Fascinated by life on the streets, especially the ubiquitous, ever-toiling, low-wage earners who are so easily overlooked, Sơn uses his photography to create large-scale, layered photo-reliefs and installations that reflect his street experiences. — VNS

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