Exhibit celebrates 112th anniversary of Vietnam capital’s iconic bridge

An exhibit which features paintings and photos by 50 local and international artists to mark the 112th anniversary of Hanoi’s hallmark Long Bien Bridge is running until June 25.

The exhibit, “Cau Long Bien – cay cau cua nghe thuat” (Long Bien Bridge – the bridge of art), features 12 paintings and 112 photos by artists and photographers from Vietnam, the US, France, Belgium, Denmark and South Korea.

Displayed at Dolphin Plaza, 28 Tran Binh, My Dinh District, the artworks are strongly expressive of the historic bridge’s different aspects, including love, war and peace, hopes and aspirations.

Most of the works were created during the time of two Long Bien Bridge Art Festivals from 2008 to 2010 to commemorate the 1,000th anniversary of Thang Long (Vietnam’s former capital) – Hanoi.

One of the exhibit’s highlights is the installation work called “Nhung con mat nguyen thuy” (Primitive eyes), which is symbolic of a green and peace-loving Vietnam.

The work, by sculptor Tran Duc Quy, portrays a deer-shaped alien creature, which is 2.8m tall and 8.8m long.

The eight-headed, 88-legged creature is symbolic of Vietnam’s UNESCO-recognized eight biosphere reserves.

From the mother deer’s head protrude some hundred young offspring, which are representative of Vietnam’s legendary mother Au Co and her 100 children.

On the silver-plated body made from composite and steel, a pair of antlers is built from hundreds of convex mirrors, which suggest eyes wary to humans’ devastation of nature and urge for peace on the East Vietnam Sea.

The event is jointly organized by Maison des Arts, a famous art venue in Hanoi, and Heritage Space, an advocacy initiative of the National Trust of Australia (NSW) to help identify and preserve places of heritage significance, in commemoration of the 15-year conferment as UNESCO’s City for Peace, and Long Bien Bridge’s 112th birthday.

The 2.5-km cantilever Long Bien Bridge, spanning the Red River, was built in 1903 by French architect, Gustave Eiffel, who designed the Eiffel Tower 14 years earlier.

From 1899 to 1902, more than 3,000 Vietnamese took part in the construction.

The bridge was once called Doumer, after Paul Doumer, the Governor General of French Indochina and later the French President.

At that time, it was one of the longest bridges in Asia with a length of 1,682 meters.

In March 2014, Vietnam’s Prime Minister requested that ministries and agencies maintain the bridge as it is amid concerns that recent renovation plans will ruin the century-old relic.

Source: Tuoitrenews

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