Kieu-Hanh Morel is a Vietnamese artist. She spent most of her childhood in Dalat where she attended the French school. Her father was the architect in charge of designing the furniture for the summer royal palace in Dalat. Under his guidance, she developed an interest in art and learnt to draw at a young age. After leaving Saigon in 2002, she lived mostly in Paris, Hongkong and Singapore since. Confronted by a sense of loss, she immersed herself into painting as a way to express her nostalgia for the world left behind. A painter of nostalgia, Kieu Hanh translates her love for her homeland into romanticised depictions of Vietnam’s rural life. In her compositions, she portrays peasants and fishermen who accomplish their daily work while elderly women devote themselves to traditional crafts and the custody of ancestral rituals. Children who resemble her own offsprings carelessly play with water buffaloes, reflecting her yearning for a life closer to nature. The past, symbolised by the gnarled hands of an old woman, gives way to the future, embodied in the beaming face of a young boy who proudly smiles to the viewer from a basket on his mother’s head.
Kieu-Hanh draws inspiration from photographs, which elements she recombines following her own imagination and the harmonious balance of the composition. After priming the canvas, she draws the objects freehand, subsequently applying natural materials like sand and gesso to bring tactility and warmth to the cold gaze of photography. At times, she inserts fragments of fabric, silk paper or newspaper through the layers of paint, which catch the eye of the beholder and draw him inside her world.
The refined and discreet Vietnamese artist has found a creative way to appease her nostalgia depicting iconic images of her native lost paradise.
curated by Fiorenza De Monti
- NPE Art Residency Singapore - 13 to 19 June, 2019
- Art Selegie Center Singapore - 2 to 9 October, 2019
- 2015 : Cowparade Paris
- 2014 : Marché des Peintres, Atelier de Dominique Schmitt Rueil Malmaison
- 2013 : Marche des Peintres (April), Atelier de Dominique Schmitt Rueil Malmaison (June), Cowparade at Valenciennes City (Sep-Nov), Médiathèque Rueil Malmaison (December)
- 2012 : Les Peintres du Marais Paris 4e (May), Atelier de Dominique Schmitt Rueil Malmaison (June), Marché des Peintres (October), Médiathèque Rueil Malmaison (December)
- 2011 : Atelier de Dominique Schmitt Rueil Malmaison (June), Les Peintres du Marais Notre Dame de Paris (Sep), Marché des Peintres Rueil Malmaison (Oct), Salons des Rubans Bleus City Hall of Rueil Malmaison (November)
- 2010 : Atelier de Dominique Schmitt Rueil Malmaison (June), Foyer Vietnam Paris 5e (Jun – August), Marché des Peintres Rueil Malmaison (Oct), Médiathèque Rueil Malmaison (December)
- 2009 : Marché des Peintres Rueil Malmaison (April, July, December)
2008 : Marché des Peintres Rueil Malmaison (April, June, October, December)