Yoko Ono project at new art centre hinh anh 1The Wish Tree at The Foliage exhibition. (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Hundreds of art lovers attended the opening of an exhibition showcasing contemporary artworks by 18 Vietnamese and foreign artists in Hanoi on June 6 night.

Entitled Toa or The Foliage, the exhibition marks the launch of the Vincom Centre for Contemporary Art (VCCA), sponsored by Vietnam’s biggest real estate developer, VinGroup. The VCCA is locates within the 4,000sq.m basement of the group’s Royal City Shopping Mall.

Speaking at the launch ceremony, VinGroup deputy chairwoman Le Mai Lan said: “Many people may wonder – an art centre located at a megamall. However, there is a message that we wish to spread: Art, especially contemporary art, not only resides at luxurious and glittering venues, but is present anywhere that it can reflect the breath of life, which is an endless source for it.”

“Following that motto, the VCCA not only honours art values, but also is a place where anyone can access easily and enjoy art.”

Developed and financed by VinGroup, the non-profit centre aims to support artists as well as to bring contemporary art closer to the public in Vietnam. It also helps improve cultural values and to promote the development of a stable and professional art market.

At The Foliage exhibition, visitors can join in an art project called Wish Tree by Yoko Ono.

Conceived sometime in the early 1980s after the assassination of John Lennon, Ono’s multi-site project Wish Tree consists of installations of any number of trees native to the sites. Visitors to the installations are invited to write their wishes on small pieces of paper – known as "wish-tags" – and hang them onto the tree branches.

The wish-tags are collected by Ono, buried in capsules in and around her Imagine Peace Tower in Reykjavik, Iceland, which emanates a skyward light for two months every year, starting on John Lennon’s birthday, ending on each anniversary of his passing. A monument to his memories and legacy, Wish Tree is a celebration of life, love and unity. To date, the project has visited 19 different cities around the world, with something close to 1 million wishes collected for the Imagine Peace Tower.

The Foliage – the first time the Wish Tree has been presented in Vietnam – loc vung trees have been chosen for the installation.

Indigenous to Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries, loc vung trees are most likely to be found in people’s houses and gardens, giving shade on sunny days, and also meant to bring good luck.

Alongside the Wish Tree, The Foliage also displays several artworks by other artists.

The Foliage is open to the public until August 6.-VNA