Liberation Radio on air again in Hanoi

Liberation Radio on air again in Hanoi

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28 May – 13 June 2021
Manzi Exhibition Space
No 2 ngõ Hàng Bún, Ba Đình, Hà Nội

From Manzi:

In 1968, a group of American military deserters went to the North Vietnamese mission in Stockholm with one object in mind – to join the army they had been drafted to fight. Instead, they were recruited for the propaganda war – and use magnetic tape, pop music and political rhetoric to persuade other American servicemen to desert. Their recordings were transported from Sweden to Vietnam by diplomatic bag, and broadcast from transmitters on the rooftops of Hanoi, and revolutionary bases in the countryside.

Vincent Strollo (left) and the American Deserters Committee, Stockholm, 1968

From 28 May, the work being displayed at Manzi Exhibition Space, Hanoi’s renowned home for contemporary art, will revive that circuit of communication.

Liberation Radio is an installation by artist and filmmaker Esther Johnson, sound artist Nhung Nguyễn, and historian Matthew Sweet that will connect the visitor to this unexplored story from the Vietnamese past.

With contributions from some of the surviving American deserters, Swedish anti-war activists and Vietnamese journalists of the period, visitors to Manzi will hear the voice of Liberation Radio speak.

Notes for visitors:
– Due to the fragility of the installation and the complexity of the set up, we can only accommodate 5 people for each slot.
– In light of the current COVID-19 developments, please wear a mask when visiting and use the hand sanitizer provided at the entrance.

Special thanks to
British Council Vietnam
Manzi Art Space
Goethe Institut Hanoi

and the following contributors and collaborators….
Klara Blomgren, Lisa Bowerman, Marilyn Phạm Dacusin, Hồ Trâm Anh, Huyền Thanh Nguyễn Ban Ga, Nguyễn Hằng, Phạm Thế Vũ, Maja Sten, Vincent Strollo, Tô Minh Sơn Triệu Đức Trọng, Peter Walsh, David Warner, Christopher Wilson

This project is funded by FAMLAB (Film, Archives and Music Lab) Fund as part of the British Council’s Heritage of Future Past project in Việt Nam

Event is open by appointment only. Please register via Manzi’s email: [email protected]


Esther Johnson is a UK artist who works with moving image, audio and photography. Recent projects include archive feature film ASUNDER with live score, commissioned by 14–18 Now to commemorate WW1, and British Council supported DUST & METAL in production with the Vietnam Film Institute and TPD. She studied at the Royal College of Art, London and is Professor of Film and Media Arts at Sheffield Hallam University.

Nhung Nguyễn (aka Sound Awakener) is a Hanoi-based sound artist, experimenting across a range of left-field aesthetics and expressions – ambient drone, electro-acoustics, noise music, musique concrète and others. Nhung’s music and sounds have appeared in exhibitions including Citizen Earth (2020), Le Giang’s D’eau et de verdure (2020, HCMC and Hanoi), Phan Thao Nguyễn’s Poetic Amnesia (HCMC and Hanoi, 2017) and public-art initiatives Into Thin Air (2016) and Into Thin Air 2 (2018). She has also composed soundtracks for short films.

Matthew Sweet is a UK author and presents Free Thinking on BBC Radio 3. His latest book, Operation Chaos: The Vietnam Deserters Who Fought the CIA, the Brainwashers and Themselves is published by Picador.

Follow updates on event’s page.

Manzi Art Space
14 Phan Huy Ich, Hanoi
Manzi Exhibition Space
02 Ngo Hang Bun, Hà Nội
Tel: (024) 3716 3397


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