Prior to 1945 little difference in style existed between the modern art of northern and southern Việt Nam. However, after that watershed in history a marked divergence occurred. During the fight for Vietnamese independence the art community of the north played a crucial role in depicting the people's struggle for a new life; during the 1940s and 1950s both established and up-coming artists devoted their talents to the revolutionary cause, many enduring conditions of unimaginable hardship to … [Read more...]

Before 1945

The earliest Vietnamese artist to achieve recognition for his work in the medium of oil and watercolour painting was Lê Văn Miến (1873 -1943), a native of Huế who studied classical academic painting at theÉcole des beaux arts in Paris in the early 1890s. However, at the turn of the century western concepts of space and light in art were still alien to Việt Nam and the 'realism' of his work would undoubtedly have raised eyebrows in Vietnamese artistic circles. Contemporary French art was … [Read more...]

Indulging a love for lustrous lacquer


The Vietnamese knew how to process raw lacquer more than 2,000 years ago, but it was only in the early part of the 20 th century that it was transformed from a decorative craft into the modern pictorial art form we know and love. Le Ha reports. Past master: Phan Ke An , a renowned lacquer artist who painted the award-winning picture Remembering an Afternoon in the Northwest. — VNS Photos Viet Thanh … [Read more...]

Vietnamese Modern Paintings – The Pioneers

Born in 1910 in Kien An Town, Hai Phong City, and died in 1994 in Hanoi.

By Quang Phong, Quang Viet and H.C. Vietnamismoving forward. The Vietnamese are not only looking ahead to their future, however, but also making an effort to sort out their past. Recently they have come to terms with the origin of their modern art. For many years, this has been a sensitive topic as Vietnamese modern art began as a joint product of French liberalism and Vietnamese traditionalism during a period of brutal French colonialism and strong Vietnamese patriotism. Before doi moi … [Read more...]