The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Sun Yat Sen features Vietnamese art

A new art exhibit entitled “Vietnamese Modernism,” was unveiled last week in the Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery located in Sun Yat Sen Hall, introducing the St. John’s community to Vietnamese artists and culture.

The exhibit is co-sponsored by the St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Kaw Valley Companies, Inc., Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and Nhat Minh Co., LTD.

Composed of 48 pieces, the show consists of photographs, traditional silk garments that are embroidered or painted on, oil paintings, wooden statues, and do paper, a type of paper traditionally used in Vietnam.

“Vietnamese Modernism” is the end result of the work of 13 emerging artists, a summer trip to Vietnam, and an interaction of cultures.

Parvez Mohsin, director of the gallery and curator of Vietnamese Modernism, visited Vietnam this past summer with Dr. Hung Le, Assistant Dean in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and the St. John’s women’s volleyball team.

There he had a chance to meet the artists in their studios and homes while selecting the works to be brought back to the U.S.
With the help of graduate students who can translate Vietnamese, they were able to record interviews with the artists, museum and gallery directors, and critics-thus gaining insight about Vietnam’s contemporary art and culture.

“Working closely with artists living in Vietnam, we hope to maintain the links with traditional culture while promoting and entertaining an excellent selection of these new art talents to the United States for everyone to enjoy,” said Mohsin.

Mohsin, who selected each piece, wanted to create an exhibit that would contribute to the liberal arts of St. John’s.

“This is an opportunity to immerse yourself in Vietnam and a chance for these artists to be introduced to the United States,” Mohsin said.

This exhibition serves as a gateway to learn more about Vietnam and its exploding art scene.

“I’ve never known much about Vietnam,” said Bianca Spizzirri, a third year art student. “As an art student, it’s interesting to see these pieces from a different part of the world.”

The exhibition, which opened on October 15, 2007, will run until January 15, 2008.

An opening reception will be held on October 31, 2007 between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., where there will be a Vietnamese fashion show and a live auction of select pieces.

Proceeds from the auction will be donated to orphanages and schools for disabled children and to help relieve victims of flooding in Vietnam.

In addition to the live auction, out of the 48 shown pieces, those that are sold will also help fund a scholarship specifically for Vietnamese students in St. John’s.

The artists will also be visiting Manhattan from October 25 to November 5.

During their visit, they will have the opportunity to see museums and different types of galleries.

They will also be part of a round-table discussion where they will talk about their work and what it entails to be artists in Vietnam.

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