01/11/2015 10:28 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

Vietnam’s Culture at the Guimet Museum

The Guimet Museum in Paris is famous for its large collections of Asian art and culture, including those of Vietnam.
The Guimet Museum in Paris has a total exhibition area of about 5,500m2. There are around 5,000 Vietnamese exhibits showcased there, many of them are  artifacts, such as statues of Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara  or Chu Dau ceramics. The museum also puts on traditional Vietnamese art performances such as folk music, Quan ho (love duet) singing, Cai luong (traditional southern opera) and Don ca tai tu singing.

Hubert Laot, auditorium manager of the Guimet Museum, is very enthusiastic about showcasing different art genres of Vietnam in France. In order to better understand Vietnamese culture and art, he went to Hanoi, Bac Ninh, Bac Giang and central Vietnam to experience these types of art performance directly. He assumed that all types of Vietnamese art were more real within the community. When he went to Bac Ninh to meet Quan ho singers who deliver melodic songs that sink into people’s souls,  Laot was thrilled. He said, “These types of art can only survive when all of us, Vietnamese, French and global citizens, do every single thing needed to put them on stage”.



The Guimet Museum in Paris is famous for its large collections of Asian art and culture,
including those of Vietnam. Photo: File



A corner of displaying collections from Vietnam. Photo: File


Recently, a combined concert-conference has been held in Hanoi to introduce
Vietnamese pieces of art and art performances on display at the Guimet  museum. Photo: Khanh Long/VNP



Hubert Laot, auditorium manager of the Guimet Museum, introduces art exhibitions on display
at the Guimet Museum and artists who are cooperating with the museum. Photo: Khanh Long/VNP



The Vietnamese enjoy art performances that are being introduced at the Guimet museum. Photo: Khanh Long/VNP


Artisit Huong Thanh and British musician Jason Carter perform at the conference on introducing the Guimet museum.
Photo: Khanh Long/VNP



Artist Tran Quang Khai, who has cooperated with the Guimet museum for a long time,
performs Dan moi (Vietnamese jaw harp) at the Guimet Museum. Photo: File

When the museum was under maintenance in 2001, Laot started working with Tran Quang Hai, who is an expert in folk music and also the son of late Professor Tran Van Khe. Hai served as a bridge to connect  Laot with many overseas Vietnamese artists such as Ngoc Giau, Nguyen Xuan Hoach, Thanh Hoai, Thanh Binh and Cong Hung to ask them to cooperate.

In January 2006, with the participation of artists Tran Quang Hai, Bach Yen and Quynh Hanh, the first Vietnamese art show was staged at the museum, attracting a large number of people.

Recently,  Laot invited People’s Artist Ngoc Giau to France to introduce Cai luong  (traditional southern opera)  to the museum and  the auditorium was packed with people watching the Vietnamese Cai luong show. The Vietnamese artists also received much support from overseas Vietnamese in France.

Laot said that the museum was planning several activities to promote various types of Vietnamese art in France. These projects aim at honouring, preserving and promoting Vietnamese culture. The most important thing is to present these types of art exactly as they really are without any changes or distortions so that the French can understand the real culture of Vietnam.

The museum has been successful in promoting Vietnamese culture in France, proving the friendship between the two countries. Musical expert Tran Quang Hai acknowledged: “So far, Vietnamese music shows at the museum have attracted a lot of audiences and Laot has managed to introduce Vietnamese art with its highest values to the French public”.



A Vietnam’s ancient statue of Buddha on display at the museum. Photo: File


A  carved dragon is on display at the museum. Photo: File


A statue of Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara that dates back to the 18th century is exhibited at the museum. Photo: File


A statue of Buddha is on display at the museum. Photo: File


Vietnam’s Chu Dau ceramics are on display at the museum. Photo: File


An ancient statue of Vietnam. Photo: File


A Cham’s statue is  on display at the museum. Photo: File


The poster of the Cai luong performance, “Da co hoai lang” (Night Drumbeats for the Absent Husband),
with the participation of artist Ngoc Giau  at the Guimet museum. Photo: File

 
Story: Bich Van - Photos: Khanh Long & Files