Vietnam ~ Art History ~ Vietnamese ~ Art ~ Asian ~ Oriental  ~ 169 Slides
The author is a retired attorney and still producing artist.


In the early twentieth century Vietnam was taken over by the French who colonized it. The French got involved in every aspect of Vietnam and, considering they were then the world leaders in art, they naturally got heavily involved in establishing their arts there.

The French set up schools. They taught their techniques and traditions in art. This was a major opportunity for a unique hybrid to develop: Eastern art, the starting point for the Vietnamese people, PLUS the greatest traditions of Western art supplied by its masters, the French. The French even sent some of the best Vietnamese painters back to Paris to set up their careers there.

Colonizing other countries is a losing proposition long range so inevitably French colonialism ended. They were out for good by the 1950s but they had left their art mark from decades of colonial occupation. The French influence is still present today.

The Americans came in during the 1960s but not to colonize it. They wanted to stop Communism there. Ironically, the Americans had become the art capital of the world in 1945, replacing Paris and the French. They didn’t go to Vietnam to set up art schools and teach their traditions of painting. However, they did end up taking the Vietnamese home as spouses or immigrants. They also eventually became friendly, engaging in many exchanges, including art ones.

Thus, in quick succession, the Vietnamese got to create a hybrid art form again by being involved with this successor country to the French as leader of the art world.
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  • Vietnam.pptx

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Created: Mar 27, 2017

Updated: Feb 22, 2018

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