This Friday, May 7th, head to Galerie Quynh at 65 De Tham in District 1 from 6:30 t0 8:30pm for SHARE, a project to support artistic skills for disadvantage children.

The event will include an exhibition and silent auction of 12 canvases that are the result of an action painting activity that took place in HCM City. Disadvantaged youth who are currently living at a shelter were asked to express what is precious to them. Each child was given one of the 12 canvases to articulate her or his idea. When the 12 canvases were joined together again, they formed a new picture. The canvases will be exhibited individually, but this compilation can still be seen in the video:

The whole picture, which served as the starting point of the action painting, was only visible when the canvases were placed together. At the park, the children used their collages and drawings as well as their spontaneous ideas to adorn each canvas. The 12 connected canvases formed a large map of HCM City . A unifying symbol, the “hoa mai tet flower”, was placed on top of the map, as it stands for hope–the hope of children who came to HCM City in search of a better life.

SHARE is a project of the “Disabled and Disadvantaged Children’s Charity of HCMC” to support artistic skills of disadvantaged kids. We invite artists to participate by dedicating either their time to share their skills with the children or the production of artwork that can be sold to benefit the programme. Costs for our materials are covered by money we receive from selling these products, with the remaining profit donated to the children. Currently we work with the Green Bamboo Shelter for disadvantaged boys, 5 to 16 years old.

The money is spent on education and goes directly to the shelter. For further information, please contact andreatenner@gmail.com or sam.mondon@zoomeroom.de

Update: This exhibit has been extended through May 1.

If you haven’t yet stopped by Galerie Quynh to see the current exhibit, Static Motion, you’ve got one more week to do so before the show closes.

And you certainly should. The pairing of these almost monochromatic series might seem like an odd choice, but once you step into the space, even before you engage with the individual pieces, the title of the exhibit makes immediate sense. By showing George Papadimas’ geometric sculptures and Nguyen  Thanh Truc’s collage-esque paintings together, gallery owner Quynh Pham has created a space the seems alive with an electronic buzz. At a certain depth of field, Nguyen’s paintings, anchored by Papadimas’ sculptures, seem to have the blizzard-like entropy of dropped broadcast flickering on your television screen:

Individually, the artists’ works capture the relationship between stasis and movement, as well.

There is something irresistible about Papadimas’ sculpture. You can’t help but walk circles around them, attempting to divine meaning in their vertices, watching as they seem to morph as you move. Papadimas often employs algorithms in his construction, and here he focuses on “the oppositional nature of the numbers 0-9.”  In the exhibit literature, Pham writes that the sculptures “allude to an order that goes beyond societal and cultural appropriations.” Perhaps that’s why you feel like you could obsess over the objects for hours; they seem to reflect something essential and unknowable, the tantalizing gap between the potential of mathematics to reveal mysteries of the natural order and our ability to actually conceptualize the answers.

If Papadimas’ sculptures exist askew of society, Nguyen Thanh Truc’s paintings provide a sort of visual expression of its ability to consume us and our attempts to impose order on the flood of information that assails us today. Nguyen adheres strips of newspapers and magazines to canvas, clips of the information stream that shape our reality. Visualized this way, one of our meaning making systems–the media–seems almost like an assault on our senses. As a magazine writer and rabid consumer of media, I find Nguyen’s work extremely potent. It has the ability to simultaneously express the sense of duty news consumers feel to utilize all of the information available via print, broadcast and Internet, the futility of that project and the guilt associated with the project’s failure. I cannot speak to the engagement with Vietnamese society, politics and culture expressed in the headlines, but I think Nguyen’s paintings transcend Vietnam in some ways.

The show runs through Saturday, April 24. Head down to Galerie Quynh at 65 De Tham in District 1. Open Tuesday through Saturday 10am to 6pm.

Contributed by Tom DiChristopher

A new exhibition of video, objects and photo-based work by pioneering media artist Bruce Yonemoto called North South East West opens tonight at 6pm at Galerie Quynh.

Bruce Yonemoto is acclaimed for his collaborations with his brother Norman as well as for his independent practice. His work references the clichés and myths of American culture and the influence of media – most notably Hollywood productions – on society and culture. At the same time his work addresses issues such as identity, race and ethnicity and more generally universal preoccupations with time, life and death. The artist explores America’s collective memory and distorts reality into a semi-permanent state of illusion and stupor.  We are faced with aspects of our daily lives that rarely appear as clear as in Yonemoto’s documentations and manipulations of memory.  Although his practice often references America, his works have cross-cultural inferences to which viewers of different cultures can relate.

Bruce Yonemoto has been honored with numerous awards and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Film Institute, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Maya Deren Award for Experimental Film and Video. He and his brother, Norman, were the subject of a major mid-career survey at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles in 1999. Bruce’s solo installations, photographs and sculptures have been featured in one person shows at institutions such as the ICC in Tokyo, the ICA in Philadelphia and the Kemper Museum in Kansas City and in gallery exhibitions at Alexander Gray, New York, Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, Tomio Koyama, Tokyo. His work has also been featured in ‘Los Angeles 1955-85’ at the Pompidou Center, Paris, and the Generali Foundation, Vienna, The Getty Research Center in LA, and the 2008 Gwangju Biennial, Korea. His works can be found in various public collections around the world including the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Exhibition dates: December 17, 2009 – January 16, 2010

Location: Galerie Quynh, 65 De Tham Street, District 1, HCMC, Vietnam

Gallery hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 10am – 6pm

Closed on Sundays and Mondays

Contact information: Mai Ardia (English); Huynh Kim Yen (Vietnamese), info@galeriequynh.com, +84 (08) 3836 8019