Galerie Quynh New Gallery Exhibition ‘the line’ by Tran Van Thao

Tran Van Thao, the line #5, 2017, cotton, acrylic and oil on canvas, 120 x 160 cm

Bangkok, Thailand – Galerie Quynh is thrilled to announce the opening of its new gallery space in the heart of Dakao, District 1, a lively area that reflects the dynamic pulse of the city. Following the closure of its downtown location six months ago, Galerie Quynh could not be more delighted to inaugurate its ambitious 600 sqm gallery with  ‘the line’ –  the first solo  exhibition  in four years of Vietnam’s foremost abstract painter Tran Van Thao.

‘the line’ finds Tran in a contemplative mood. While previous bodies of work took inspiration from the artist’s surrounding environments and the little joys found in everyday life, his new paintings – stylistically sparser and utilizing a more muted palette yet larger in thematic scope – are somber ponderings on life’s passages and trajectories. There is an airiness about these new paintings, yet a marked tension as well conveying an equilibrium. Straight lines are the key element of the series, forming linear shapes of markers or arrows – perhaps needles of compasses. In contrast with the languid circles found in Tran’s other recent works, the lines suggest an almost urgent sense of direction and movement. In a similar manner, the canvas surfaces, textured with a plethora of material physicality and recurring motifs (lined, wrinkled, treated, imprinted with sprawling congregations of paint, oil, acrylic, graphite, and even swaths of textile appearing windswept over raining skies) seem to represent thevast expanse that is a lifetime – overwhelming, serendipitous, changing from one moment to the next, unforeseeable. Through this, one traverses, through all weather systems and fantastic voyages, led by one’s own compass, though not necessarily knowing where it might lead.


Born in 1961 in Saigon, Tran Van Thao belongs to an influential group of painters that rose to prominence in the 90s following the introduction of the 1986 Doi Moi economic reforms. Part of the seminal Group of 10 artists that served as a catalyst for the Vietnamese government’s recognition of abstraction as a legitimate genre of art, Tran was one of the group’s most prominent members. Tran continues to inspire new generations of artists in Vietnam to challenge the accepted (official) norms of art in the country. Tran has participated in numerous exhibitions around the world. His works have been shown in institutions such as the Singapore National Art Museum, Singapore; Fujita Vente Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan; Pusan MetropolitanMuseum, Korea; National Art Gallery, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Museo Biblioteca Archivio, Bassano del Grappa, Italy; and Centre Wallonie-Bruxelles, Paris, France. Tran has received a number of awards and prizes including the Starr FoundationFellowship from Asian Cultural Council where he spent four months as an artist-in-residence in New York City. Tran lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City.


Recognized as Vietnam’s leading contemporary art gallery, Galerie Quynh has been promoting contemporary art practice in the country for almost two decades. The gallery is known internationally for its consistently focused programming and educational initiatives. Working with a select group of emerging, mid-career and established Vietnamese artists, the gallery also exhibits the work of distinguished artists from around the world. In keeping with its mission to develop a sustainable ecosystem for the arts in Vietnam, the gallery collaborates with artists, curators, museums and art spaces locally and internationally to organize talks and lectures as well as to produce publications in English and Vietnamese. In May 2014 the gallery founded the non-profit educational initiative Sao La. Spearheaded by Ho Chi Minh City-based artists Nguyen Kim To Lan and Nguyen Duc Dat, Sao La comprises a young, diverse group of passionate creative working loosely as a collective.

A new chapter begins in December 2017 as Galerie Quynh unveils its new, 600 sqm location in Dakao, District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City. Spread over four floors, the space will play an even more vital role in the cultural community with more ambitious programming to be realized.

Artists:                          Tran Van Thao


Exhibition Title:             the line


Exhibition Dates:          December 14, 2017 – January 20, 2018


Opening Reception:     Thursday, December 14, 2017 from 6:30 – 8:30pm Venue: Galerie Quynh

118 Nguyen Van Thu, Dakao, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City


Contacts:                      Ms. Celine Alexandre – Ms. Trang Pham –

Telephone:                   +84 28 3822 7218


Hours:                          10 am – 7 pm, Tuesday – Saturday, and by appointment

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