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27/03/2020 - 07:31

Institut français de Hué: Connecting young artists with the public

Apart from educational activities, Institut français de Hué (IF Hue) – the French Institute in Hue – is a culture and art hub with galleries and music performances by local and oversea artists.

For many years, IF Hue has become a culture and art hub

Supports for artists

Do Van Lan, a sculptor and painter working for the Department of Culture and Sports, has never thought of having his own exhibition despite his large number of works. After a casual talk with Nguyen Bao Quoc, the IF Hue director, Lan was surprisingly offered an opportunity for his exhibition.

This is seen as a milestone to a young artist like Do Van Lan. He industriously found new and unique ideas, and painted to have enough works for the exhibition.

Do Van Lan’s exhibition ‘... From my intimate garden’ which was held in 2019 at IF Hue brought to spectators 32 works of different art forms, including sculpture, art installation, reliefs, paintings and graphics.

His exhibition also marked the maturity in his art career with many works being the experiments of new methods and materials. The familiar flowers and plants of the country, the sympathy and sharing between people, and the nostalgia of the childhood and family are attractively displayed through the paintings in gentle colors, the work of round statue, and reliefs.

Do Van Lan said: “In the preparation for the exhibition, I was not only encouraged for more creativity but also supported with many things by the IF Hue. I hope that the IF Hue will forever be an ideal hub for artists.”

The IF Hue is also a place connecting Hue public with artists from abroad, especially from France.

Peintures Musicales (‘Musical Paintings’) was an exhibition of a French artist, Jacob Reymond, presenting to the public works of different materials such as acrylics and Indian ink on paper and canvas, inspired from the classical music, contemporary music and jazz. Spectators contemplated paintings of pieces of music. Bach’s was known to be the inspiration for the artist.

Jacob Reymond said while at the exhibition, “Music is my passion, so I paint in the musical atmosphere. Once I choose a piece of music, I listen to it carefully for several times and listen to different performance styles in order to “decode” it. After that I paint the piece of music on paper or canvas, the music notes are visualized in strokes and colors. It is my pleasure to have an exhibition organized in the cultural land of Hue, and the IF Hue is the bridge spanning me and you all.”

A platform for young artists

The IF Hue is the culture and art hub, with art and music activities by local and international artists, especially artists from France and the Francophonie. Special priority is given to local young artists. The French Embassy new policy as of 2019 is to create more platforms for young artists.

Mr. Nguyen Bao Quoc said: “With the young-artist-centered approach, we have held many exhibitions to introduce art works to spread the messages from young artists to the public. We select both professional and amateur artists, providing that they have talent and their works show the breakthrough and uniqueness.”

In response to the invitation from IF Hue to have exhibitions, many young artists were not confident to introduce their works to the public at first. Yet they were motivated by the encouragement, guidance and supervision during their preparation and creativity.

Painting for fun, Nguyen Thi Quynh Huong – a medical doctor – has never thought of having her own exhibition. Encouraged and assisted by the IF Hue, she had the exhibition “Hope” in 2018 when she was in the last year at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Hue University. The exhibition presented to the public 20 works she painted within a year when she had the idea of having an exhibition to raise fund for poor pediatric cancer patients. Half of the paintings were sold, allowing Huong to have significant gifts for poor patients.

According to Mr. Nguyen Bao Quoc, IF Hue gives priority to assist Hue young artists to exhibit their works within the IF system in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang. After the recent working trip to Hue by the cultural attaché of the French Embassy, IF Hue will introduce Hue young artists to opportunities to participate in culture and art activities in France.

The French Embassy also funded to renovate the building of IF Hue, including the space for exhibition and the culture and art activities, and a cinema. The French Embassy is implementing new policies of boosting the cultural exchanges by sending more artist delegates to Hue.

In addition to the artistic performances, IF Hue also holds galas for artists home and abroad to help young artists to have exchanges of academic issues, experience and updates of world artistic life. 

Story and photo: MINH HIEN

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