Quach Dong Phuong

Posted: March 9, 2008 in creativity

Quach Dong Phuong is a world-renowned Vietnamese artist whose works are widely exhibited and highly sought by art collectors around the world including private collections in France, USA, UK, Italy, Australia, Japan, and Singapore. I personally like his work aesthetically as well as philosophically. Artistically and stylistically I find the colour compositions and the patterned, simplistic nature of his paintings very appealing, as well as the stylised representations of people and their environment. Colours vary from earthy to vibrant and shapes are mostly geometrical; people always appear faceless and in mass congregations, almost like ants.

There seems to be a sense of industriousness in his images, and given that Vietnam still calls itself a communist state, I the people in them represent not just randomly selected citizens but actually the working class, especially considering that they mostly arranged as groups. And while i used the metaphor of ants above, I don’t think that the facelessness in Quach Dong Phuong’s people suggests a loss of individuality, humanness or a robotic existence; instead the paintings could actually present the de-emphasising of the individual as something positive: individuality becomes collectiveness. Maybe Quach Dong Phuong idealises here to a degree his childhood experiences of having been brought up in an environment that at least in theory and its education system probably promoted values like cooperation and equality.

In any case: the depiction of what could be working class life in Vietnam certainly seems quite unique and in my mind is beautiful. By that I don’t mean to support art for art’s sake – to the contrary. Yet I do like aesthetics and for me Quach Dong Phuong is doing a very good job here!


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