Vietnam Art Books -- Calligraphy blossoms over Vietnamese Tet holiday (February 03, 2007)

Calligraphy blossoms over Vietnamese Tet holiday (February 03, 2007)

With Tet, the Vietnam Lunar New Year only two weeks away, nostalgic or traditionally-tuned locals love to bring calligraphy works home, and skilled artists have chances to spread full swing in Ho Chi Minh City.

At a corner of Truong Dinh and Dien Bien Phu streets under shady roadside trees in district 3, dozens of cots lie in file, displaying paper or cotton scrolls decorated by calligraphy of Vietnamese words.

At first looks, they look like Chinese characters under fantastic and artistic forms but scrutinizing further, they reveal themselves as Vietnamese in the Latin alphabet.

Customers can buy already written scrolls or simply order their own words. The art dwindled for some time in the past, but has made a comeback in recent years.

Famous artist Bui Hien, who has been writing or to be more exact drawing calligraphy for 7 years, earns as much as VND20 million (US$1,250) per Tet.

But now he has to face competition from art students who want to earn a little money for mobile phones and jeans, to show their skills or to garner experience from veterans like Hien.

The 30/4 Park in the downtown core is also witness to hectic business. Good artists are here including Tru Vu, Thanh Son, and Song Nguyen. Foreigners are sometimes interested.

Vinh Nghiem Pagoda in district 3 and Van Hanh Monastery in Phu Nhuan district boast Huynh Dieu, Tuan Hai, Te The, Gia Can, also seasoned in the skill.

In Go Vap district, there is Lac Hong Calligraphy Club with Nguyen Tac, Thien Dung, and Hung Quy.

District 8 sees calligraphist Van Hai, Tran Ba Linh, and Kim Long. The former are usually employed to write things like “Phuc nhu Dong Hai truong luu thuy. Tho ty Nam Son bat lao tung”, roughly translated as: Luck is as countless as the East Sea and longevity as the Southern Mountain. He often draws zodiac animals underneath. The year 2007 is the year of the pig.

Speaking of calligraphy, we must not miss Chinese characters, famous for their leeway to creativeness and fantasy.

The Chinese community calligraphers in Ho Chi Minh City probably concentrate the most at the District 5 Cultural Center.

Last month, the center opened for the second time a Chinese calligraphy contest for students learning the language, in which nearly 120 from 9 schools took part.

Then the Traditional Arts Exhibition, which has been organized in the city over the past 2 decades, too features the art.

Reprinted from THANHNIEN News


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good job, by twoinone (January 28, 2010 07:43 AM)

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