Black and White, a solo exhibition of lacquer paintings by Binh Duong-based artist Nguyen Quang Son.
Nguyen Quang Son was born and raised in what is commonly referred to as the “lacquer village” in Binh Duong Province. Son says, “Growing up in a family wedded to the use and production of lacquer, it is quite natural for me to pursue this as my artistic practice. I know and understand this special material and am more intrigued by the possibilities of lacquer than I am of any other kind of creative material.”
Lacquer is among the most technically demanding and time consuming of materials for an artist to work with. Experience is crucial and one small error at any of the numerous stages of creation can mean the difference between success and failure. In this regard, Son benefits from operating a workshop where in addition to making his own art he also produces basic materials used by other lacquer artists. This includes the commercial production of vóc which are the upholstered and lacquered panels of wood which serve as the beginning “canvas” upon which lacquer artists craft the images in their work.
Son’s bona fides as a lacquer craftsman serve him well in his artistic practice. His fluency with the entire lacquer process is evident in the flawless colors and smooth finishing achieved in his paintings of the Black and White series. Eschewing the traditional themes of temples and rural life common to most Vietnamese lacquer painting, Son has chosen a more abstract route for his latest collection. He uses large quantities of sliced pieces of mother of pearl, inlaid into the lacquer and sanded to a delicate fineness, to create his abstract compositions. Set against the deep black background of the lacquer, Son’s images glitter and sparkle evoking the infinite cosmos.
Nguyen Quang Son (b. 1971) graduated from the Ho Chi Minh City Fine Arts University in 1998.
Opening Reception: Friday, 3 October, from 6 to 9 pm
Exhibition Dates: 3 October – 3 November, 2014
Location: Craig Thomas Gallery
27i Tran Nhat Duat
Tan Dinh Ward
Ho Chi Minh City