The ceramic art has grown considerably from the eleventh century with a wide variety of shapes and glazes. The theme is often representative of the Buddhist lotus petals and stylized flowers.
Since fifteenth century, Vietnamese ceramics have been exported to Japan and other neighboring countries. The village of Bat Trang (15 km from Hanoi) is the main production center for ceramics in Vietnam.
Bat Trang is well known for making excellent ceramics paintings. After having been painted, the pictures are put into the kiln and burned with high temperature. This process makes its color long lasting. The major themes like other types are sceneries of traditional villages with quiet rivers, yellow rice field or green ranges of bamboo. Most of these pictures are typical of Bat Trang style, vibrant yet simple. There are now various practices in which the artists use brushes and non traditional color on the background of Bat Trang ceramic tile make the ceramic paintings really spectacular and outstanding. The beauties of them are deep inside the ceramic tile and fine glaze.
Ceramics production in Binh Duong Bat Trang Ceramics painting
Silk paintings are made by embroidering on the canvas of silk with sophisticated themes and vibrant colors. Success of silk painting owes much to the quality of the silk because it is used directly as background. Its delicate and refined colors give the picture such harmony with the nature and excellent representation of Vietnamese landscapes and daily life.
The XQ Su Quan in Da Lat is very famous for silky embroidered paintings
Dong Ho Painting
Originating from Dong Ho commune, Bac Ninh province, Dong Ho painting has existed for more than 300 years. The background of the painting is made of a special kind of Dzo paper coated with mollusks powder gives the painting a sparkling look. Natural colors are much more preferred so that even time or daylight cannot make it dimmer. Dong ho paintings revolve around romantic, satirical or humorous themes which are expressed by familiar images of farming life such as rice paddies, village market, or mice wedding. All focus on the aspiration of people for a harmonious, just and happy life which is not always possible due to long history of repeated war and colonialism.
Vietnamese lacquer traditionally comes in only three colors - brown, black and vermilion. During 1930s, artists adopted a new technique called “chiseling” to produce richer color range and sense of distance.
The painting is made on wood. It is covered with a piece of cloth glued to it using the sap of the lacquer tree and then coated with a layer of the sap mixed with earth. The board is then sand papered and recoated with a layer of hot sap. After polishing, this gives a smooth black surface with a brilliant luster.
The painter uses hot lacquer to draw the outline of a picture and the colors are applied one by one, layer upon layer. Each coat dries slowly.
The finishing touches consist of polishing and washing the pictures. This process may seem like brutal treatment for a work of art, but it is done with great care. This process leaves a brilliant surface on a painting.