Boi Tran’s pictorial work presents profound originality: it is part of an isolated approach, removed from the dominant schools; it expresses the search for universal humanism deeply rooted in a characteristically Vietnamese sensitivity. Boi Tran’s paintings and lacquers fit neither into the line of the School of Fine Arts in Hanoi nor into a hypothetical school of the South that might be named “the Gia Dinh school”.
Born in Hue, in central Vietnam, a city that suffered more than engendered the painful political events of the 20th century, the artist knew nothing of the influences – positive or negative – that nourished “the Schools”. Hers is a solitary body of work, freed from social contingencies, hierarchical obligations, and compromises, that was elaborated.
One often forgets the immediate context of a work of art. Certainly, the context of its creation, of its “invention” by an artist, of its insertion in a “school” or a “flow”, is often invoked or even developed. But, finally, perhaps in art the artist is of least importance because his destiny, sculpted by others, free or constrained, escapes him. Perhaps also, accordingly, is that the collection, this social link between the artist and his milieu, constitutes the most important evidence of art.
The collection which we are proud to present here illustrates a profoundly Vietnamese style of collecting: a homage, without ostentation, to genuine masters; a eulogy to the lacquer, the positioning of this collection within the space of life: that which could have been a minuscule apartment in Hanoi with walls filled with piled up artworks is, here, a garden, filled with majestic trees and languid pools, where the wind comes to gently caress the “Nha Ruong”, those exquisite old traditional wooden houses of Hue. A homage to the national masters like…
Il n’y a pas de lieu sans histoire.
Il n’y a pas d’histoire sans lieu.
Il y a des lieux sans mesure, des histoires hors du temps. Des moments élégants et des endroits secrets.
Des parcelles d’éternité et des songes saccadés.
Pour le vérifier, il faut connaître Boi Tran.
Est-ce pour elle que, dans un karma prophétique, Ngo Chan Luu (933-1011) écrivit:
“Rien ne commence, rien ne finit
Seul le vide est absolu
La vérité à comprendre
Est que toutes choses sont de même nature.”?