KVT – Utopia and Hope… at L’Espace

KVT – Utopia and Hope… at L’Espace

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An interesting and arresting exhibition title.

Not one to fall in love with a lot of modern marble sculptures, I was nonetheless impressed with the pieces on show. They appear to be symbolic of hope and humanity. Perhaps they need an exhibition space less busy so that they could stand as lovely metaphors. In a blackened room under careful lighting I think I’d be bedazzled.

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The large canvasses on the other hand fit the public area very well. They are quite confronting and when you stand in front of the almost grotesque figures you have to sometimes decide if you are an innocent bystander being asked to make value judgments about your own moral stance on pressing social and humanitarian issues, or conversely you are asked if you see your culpable reflection in the painted crowds of deformed yet conformed onlookers.

‘Negotiations’ is, at first glance, reminiscent of Da Vinci’s ‘Last Supper’ and is a stunner and fits in well with the big question of the exhibition, culpability, which is the subject of an aggressive large canvas on an opposite wall.

The monotonal canvases are, well, arresting. All show dark sides of the human psyche and human condition. They would take on a more menacing personality if displayed in a black gallery with subtle lighting. In fact for a lot of people they’d be downright scary.

The sculptures full of hope surrounded by statements that need our answers and solutions if we are to achieve a modicum of utopia is on at L’Espace until the final days of 2009 and is a sobering exhibition.

“Photos by Thanh Nguyen. See more of his work on his blog and watch for more on Grapevine.”

Not a reviewer, not a critic, “Kiếm Văn Tìm” is an interested, impartial and informed observer and connoisseur of the Hanoi art scene who offers highly opinionated remarks and is part of the long and venerable tradition of anonymous correspondents. Please add your thoughts in the comment field below.

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