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Exhibition on the history of Vietnamese lotus flowers opens

The 40 paintings by painter Nguyen Thị Thuy Huong depicts stories of lotus flowers in different places and landscapes, inspiring viewers with unforgettable feelings.

The exhibition "Hanh Trinh Di..." or "A Journey..." by painter Nguyen Thị Thuy Huong will open on December 23 at 45 Trang Tien Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi.

Painter Nguyen Thi Thu Huong with one of her favorite lotus flower artwork. Photo Ha Nguyen

Huong’s 40-painting collection depicts stories of lotus flowers in different places and landscapes, inspiring viewers with unforgettable feelings.

The paintings include “Lotus by the Perfume River”, “Lotus along Thames River”, “Learning from Lotus,” and “Lulling Lotus”, among others.

Apart from using oil paints, this time, Huong also introduces to art lovers works depicting banana and bamboo trees with traditional lacquer paints, such as in her Tre Viet or Vietnamese Bamboo.

“These trees are popular among Vietnamese because they are available at every corner of the country’s rural areas from Mong Cai in the north through the central region to Ca Mau Province in the south.

“Banana is a nutritional fruit that is very good for health, while the bamboo tree symbolizes Vietnamese resilience, resistance, and indomitableness. The tree is believed to bring good luck, good health, love, and prosperity to people,” Huong said.

The artwork titled Hoc Tu Sen depicts a story about a beautiful girl learning among lotus flowers.

Painter Tran Vu Hoang declared himself an admirer of Huong's works, especially for their simplicity and the way they show the inner essence and beauty of the humble lotus flower.

"Huong has worked hard to find her style. Her efforts have paid off. She has painted many pictures of lotus flowers with distinctive colors, which have earned her high praise from both the public and art lovers", he stated.

Hoang said each of Huong's works told a story related to the memory of Vietnamese people. "I like her collection, especially the work entitled President Ho's Sen Village Early in the Morning, which shows the painter's folk painting style."

Meanwhile, painter Truong Linh, a professor at the Hanoi College of Fine Arts, also spoke highly of her work, "Huong has always tried her best to create and discover fine arts. Her oil paintings and watercolors are full of creativity, and the vibrant color range of her works is so bright as if they somehow express a better future, full of hope."

The artwork titled Ngoc Son Toa or Ngoc Son Temple in Hanoi’s shines has won the interest of many art lovers.
Although Huong has also painted portraits, rural landscapes, and works that capture the mysterious beauty of Vietnamese women, for the past three years, she has been consumed with lotus flowers, investing all her time and passion, perhaps her very soul, into creating these scintillating works.
"I've found that I like flowers, especially lotuses. They inspire me to paint," Huong says.

Lotus flowers are a symbol of nobility and have long had a deep connection with Vietnamese culture. Legend has it that when King Ly Thai Tong (1028-1054) dreamed of lotus flowers, soon after, the One-Pillar Pagoda, a grand religious site in the capital, was built surrounded by a lotus pond.

Tran Le Khanh, a painting collector, said Huong’s paintings brought viewers gentle and peaceful sensations. “Her brushstrokes are of a free spirit without a certain model. We’ve been working together as teachers at a secondary school, so I’m lucky to have opportunities to enjoy Huong’s paintings. I like her works so much, particularly her paintings of lotus and a paddy terrace on the Khau Pha Pass of the northwestern province of Yen Bai Province,” Khanh said, adding that she was interested in these works because they reflect the prosperous and flourishing life of the local people while making viewers feel proud of the country's majestic and beautiful mountain scenery.

According to her, the work entitled Lotus Flowers by One-Pillar Pagoda had brought her a feeling of calm.

Speaking about painter Huong’s upcoming exhibition, Khanh said it was a big collection mainly of lotus flowers painted in different places, scenes, and spaces that would leave viewers with a sense of the flowers’ purity and nobility.

“Although planted and grown from mud, lotus flowers develop very well to show off their beauty and spread their fragrance. In addition, the lotus flower is still a symbol of luck and wisdom, so many art lovers have chosen lotus paintings to decorate their homes,” said Khanh.

The 10-day exhibition will run until January 2. 

Bamboo trees are very popular with the Vietnamese. The tree is believed to bring good luck, health, love, and prosperity to people.