The Biologist from Vietnam

Blue Buterflies (33x33 cm) Tempera

By Emil Svendsen

One of the exhibiting artists in the North Zealand galleries is from Vietnam. Ordinarily he is a research scientist in poultry diseases.


His name is Dang Duong Bang, has a PhD in molecular genetics. He works at Department of Poultry, Fish and Fur Animals at The Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research in Aarhus.

But in 28th August 2004, other part of the 53-year-old Vietnamese can be observed, when Galerie Knud Grothe in Charlottenlund opens a special exhibition of his art.

The owner of the gallery Knud Grothe is not afraid of calling the exhibition of Dang Duong Bang’s acrylic paintings a scoop, and he is very much looking forward to the exhibition.

“He is a very special rascal and rather unknown in Denmark. “I had once seeing his paintings at an exhibition and thought that I must exhibit his arts” – says gallery owner Knud Grothe.

“His paintings are quite special and very fascinating. He paints motives of lotus flowers, cats and naked women on thick paper. It is rather a Picasso style painting” explains Knud Grothe.

Hidden Art

Dang Duong Bang however, is not completely unknown in the artistic world. Previously he has had his own exhibition in Paris, Melbourne and several places in Holland and Denmark – i.e. in the library of Statens Serum Institut. Furthermore, in a near future he will exhibit his art in Broadway in New York and at Gallery Amber in Amsterdam.

Already as a six-year-old Dang Duong started to paint in his hometown Vinh Phu and except from a few years of tuition of drawing and silk painting, he is self-taught. Later on he became part of Hanoi’s artist’s life, and during the 70s’ communist government he was an integrated part of the resistance, which under cover kept alive the old Vietnamese painting traditions combined with western inspiration.

 Painting with children

During the last twenty years Dang Duong Bang has traveled around in the western world in connection with his scientific work – that’s why he at present lives in Aarhus for his research at the department of Poultry, Fish and Fur Animals, Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research (DFVF). Artistically Dang Duong Bang has also moved around. During the recent years he has been fascinated by children’s drawings. He has visited kinder gardens and schools in order to paint together with children. At present he has started to lacquer techniques, which means that failures are not accepted. In this connection he studies old Chinese characters on rice paper in order to come close to perfection at first sight and at the same time he also studies the essence of Asiatic painting tradition.

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