Using art exchanges to build bridges between Vietnamese, Chilean peoples

Vietnamese and Chilean artists presented their views on contemporary art and art exchanges as a powerful and proven means to advance connections between two peoples at a roundtable discussion in Hanoi on July 19th.

(VNF) - Vietnamese and Chilean artists presented their views on contemporary art and art exchanges as a powerful and proven means to advance connections between two peoples at a roundtable discussion in Hanoi on July 19th.

Using art exchanges to build bridges between Vietnamese, Chilean peoples

Scene at the roundtable discussion.

The event was jointly organised by the Chilean Embassy in Vietnam and the Vietnam-Chile Friendship and Cooperation Association under the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO).

Speaking at the discussion, Gonzalo Guaiquil Smoje, Vice Ambassador of the Embassy of the Republic of Chile in Vietnam, said the art exchange is a mean to connect Vietnamese and Chilean peoples, despite their geographical distance between the two countries.

He also shared the examples of Chilean musician Victor Jara, who wrote a song about peace in support of Vietnam during the war; and Chilean graffiti artist Alejandro “Mono” González, who travelled to Vietnam to take part in the inauguration of his 10-metre long mural painting on the Hanoi Ceramic Road on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between the two countries.

“It is a symbolic manifestation of the friendship between Vietnam and Chile, in which visual arts and culture brings people closer together,” Chilean Vice Ambassador said.

Using art exchanges to build bridges between Vietnamese, Chilean peoples

Chilean visual artist and performer Maria Luisa Portuondo-Vila at the exchange.

Chilean visual artist and performer Maria Luisa Portuondo-Vila, from the Chilean capital Santiago, said she wishes to be closer to her audience, using non-traditional art venues such as public spaces.

According to her, contemporary art consists of the artwork, audience, artist, and site specificity, adding that audience not only observe but also can interact with artists in a fluid exchange.

Maria also introduced her two art projects included "Missing Love" and “Secret” in which "Secret" has been held in many countries and regions where over 1,000 secrets written in 13 different languages were collected

“Secreto is a work in progress that, once completed, is designed to become a literary piece. It is an invitation to free ourselves collectively from the un-told. This project has traveled through various cities looking for anonymous secrets,” said Maria.

She then encouraged Vietnamese guests and artists to interact with each other and share their secrets.

"Envelops are being hung on the walls inside the cafe and you are invited to open envelops, read the secrets inside and replace them with a secret of your own," Maria said.

At the meeting, participating Vietnamese and Chilean artists discussed together the role of contemporary art and future opportunities for art exchanges between the two countries.

Chile was the second Latin American country to establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam as Vietnam was being wracked by war (March 1971). The friendly relations and comprehensive cooperation between the two countries have been growing actively across all spheres over the past few years. Chile also is the first country in the Western hemisphere to sign a free trade agreement with Vietnam (2001).

Two-way trade continues to rise, especially after the Vietnam-Chile FTA took effect on January 1st, 2014, growing from USD 170 million in 2006 to more than USD 1 billion ten years later and USD 1.3 million in 2017, making Chile one of the Latin American countries exceeding USD 1 billion in their annual bilateral trade with Vietnam. Besides political, diplomatic and economic activities, people-to-people exchanges between the two countries have been thriving as well.

Chau Pham

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