Octupus shape: Sculptor Nguyễn Lập Phương (left) and noted Việtnamese sculptor Lê Công Thành pose next to the art piece "Peaceful Birth" by Phương (Photo courtesy of the organiser)
Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese sculptor Nguyen Lap Phuong is one of 13 international artists showcasing their artwork at the Kohler Bold. Art. exhibition opening this week in Hanoi.

The exhibition, "Multiculturalism", displays sculptures of 13 artists from the Asia-Pacific and Middle East regions.

Phuong’s minimalist-style steel art piece Me Tron Con Vuong (Safe Child Birth) was inspired by the relationship between the ocean and the octopus.

“In my concept, the octopus symbolises modern artists, who are required to be smart, flexible, adaptable to any cultural and social change and able to work in any multicultural environment. Its long arms are an important organ to absorb information from the ‘multicultural ocean’,” the 28-year-old sculptor explained.   

Consisting of a round and dark-coloured base and a metal round-shaped octopus above, the piece also explores the traditional concept of “Round Sky, Square Earth”, reflecting Vietnamese respect for the heaven and earth.

The female artist also applied silver sheet inlaid, a traditional Vietnamese technique used in making lacquer and ritual items, onto her gilded piece. A layer of natural lacquer (sap of the Rhus succedanea tree), is also used in the work to enhance its gilding inlay.

The Hai Phong-born artist explained that contrasting elements - steel and silver sheet - represent hard-to-harmonize conflicts in a multicultural context: old–new, traditional–modern, positive–negative, and national identity–global acceptance.

The exhibition includes pieces by artists from Australia, China, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates.

Alongside those artworks, the exhibition also honours the winners of the “Art Inspired by Architecture” pattern design challenge that ran in Vietnam over the last few weeks. Moreover, the event also showcases a collection of the latest Artist Editions lavatories.

This is the second Kohler Bold. Art exhibition in Vietnam. Last year it featured 12 contemporary sculptures by six rising Asian artists, including Vietnam’s Nguyen Ngoc Lam.

The free exhibition starts on August 17 at 93 Dinh Tien Hoang Street. From Hanoi, the exhibition will travel around the region in 2017 and 2018.-VNA