Exhibition “Portrait of Life VI – The Bag” in Hanoi

Last update: 07:00 | 03/11/2017

VietNamNet Bridge – L’Espace, 24 Trang Tien, Hanoi will host the installation “Portrait of Life, Episode VI – The bag” by artist Tran Duc Quy from November 9, 2017 through January 14, 2018.


As a kid, I was language-delayed, often wandered and played on my own, with various objects, trees, colored chalks and modeling clay. Those are maybe the signs of what they call nowadays “autism”. 

The grown-ups in my hometown, dull and simple, don’t understand kids like that, and they often told me: Maybe we have to crack open your skull and tilt it upside down to see what’s in your head?

Then I grew up, learned how to speak, and communicate normally with people around me. But! What they said about “cracking open the skull” stuck in my mind even when I grew up. When I was young, I imagined a hundred ways how they (and I) got our skulls cracked open, what was in there, which was both intriguing and terrifying.

Upon learning about art and cultural history, I found out that, if they anatomize the physical body with skin, muscle, blood, bones and hair for medical and psychological research, they also “anatomized” to find the human soul of a long time ago through metaphors and hyperbole. 

Buddhism said the human body is a “skin-bag full of filth”, and several others religions consider the body as a “temporary home for the soul”, waiting for the day to be released back to the universe.

But is that really true? And is that a default? I tried to find the answer with my own sculpture language, and to reply to my own secret question. Because I don’t want to hear those ready-made answers.

The exhibition is open for free.


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