A Coloquium with Vietnamese Artist Tran Trong Vu
Tran Trong Vu was born in Hanoi in 1964, the youngest son of Tran Dan, one of the best known dissident writers of the 1950s. He graduated first in his class at the Hanoi School of Fine Arts in 1987 and in 1989 won a scholarship to study painting at the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He now lives and works in Paris. His most recent projects include "Good Morning Vietnam" a project of more than one hundred paintings on plastic, paper and canvas, and "Blue Memory" which is currently on exhibit at the Arizona State University Art Museum.
Tran Trong Vu will discuss his own personal experience as a Vietnamese artist at home and abroad. One of the many challenges he faced in his home country was coming to terms with Vietnam’s fine arts tradition. When he studied fine arts in Hanoi in the eighties he found that his own aesthetics were not in line with the traditional Vietnamese artist's overwhelming focus on moral values. Yet at the same time he realized that his background and the reality of life in Vietnam played an integral role in his artwork.
In Paris he has enjoyed the opportunities he has had to develop a unique artistic style while acknowledging his artistic heritage.
And yet there is always a tension: "My art reflects my personal experiences as a Vietnamese artist. It is neither merely to prove my national heritage nor to protect my cultural traditions. It is just to say that as a Vietnamese artist, sometimes you have to betray many values with which you were brought up."
Cost: Free and open to the public.
Sponsor(s): Center for Southeast Asian Studies