Chilean muralist Gonzalez: Visiting Vietnam was my dream

(VNF) – The Hanoi Ceramic Mosaic Mural was recently extended with an art work of a world-renowned mural artist from the Republic of Chile, Alejandro Mono Gonzalez.
September 21, 2017 | 10:30

(VNF) – The Hanoi Ceramic Mosaic Mural was recently extended with an art work of a world-renowned mural artist from the Republic of Chile, Alejandro Mono Gonzalez.

Trong hình ảnh có thể có: bầu trời và ngoài trời

A colourful mural painting designed by world-famous Chilean mural artist Alejandro Mono Gonzalez. (source: Galeria Taller del Mono)

The picture, painted in vibrant colors with vigorous strokes, vividly depicts the long-standing friendship between Vietnam and Chile.

The picture, which is 10 metres long and 2.3 metres high, is placed next to the portrait of Venezuelan hero Simon Bolivar, at the intersection between Au Co and Xuan Dieu street, has been capturing tremendous attention from the public since its installation on September 19.

Specially, the designer of this art work, Chilean artist Alejandro Mono Gonzalez, is in Hanoi for an arts exchange project conducted by the Embassy of Chile in Vietnam.

The artist has taken his time to share with the Vietnam Times interesting facts about his masterpiece.

As a world-famous mural artist, your paintings have been present in many countries such as Canada, Cuba, France, the Netherlands and China. How did Vietnam become your artistic inspiration?

In the 1960s of the 20th century, at the age of 20s, I was one of the active participants in the anti-war movement in Chile, together with many of my peers.

The anti-war wave in my country reached its peak in 1968, with a mass demonstration urging the US to withdraw from the inhumane war in Vietnam.

The event signified the supports of Chile for Vietnam in your struggle for indepence and freedom.

That period also marked the formation of a revolutionary artists group in the Latin America, including Venezuela, Cuba and Chile, in which the members used their talents as a propaganda medium to broadcast the love for peace and anti-war sentiment to the world.

Vietnam, a heroic country with thousands years of history, has become my inspiration for artistic creation since these days.

Visiting Vietnam had been on of my dreams throughout the last five decades.

And my dream has come true when the Chilean government and the Embassy of Chile to Vietnam invited me to participate in an art project in celebration of the 45th anniversary of Vietnam-Chile diplomatic relations establishment (1971-2016).

Trong hình ảnh có thể có: 2 người, trong nhà

Mural artist Mono Gonzalez (L) and his son Sebastián in Hanoi (source: Sebastián González Ruiz's facebook)

Is it the first time you’ve come to Vietnam? What is the greatest impression the country leaves on your mind?

It is the first time I’ve been to Hanoi, after decades of waiting.

Your country has truly astounded me. I have to say that I really admire Vietnam for the marvellous capability to recover, revive and reform during the aftermath of war.

That’s what impresses me the most. I am amazed by what you guys have done to transform the country into an emerging nation like nowadays.

What is your message to the public through this painting?

I think culture is an important bridge that bring people together, no matter how far they’re living from one another, it can even connect those from two hemispheres of the globe.

This mindset has motivated me to use my painting as a medium to broadcast the beautiful long-standing friendship between Vietnam and Chile in particular and between Vietnam and the Latin America in general.

All of the things you see in the picture symbolize these treasured ties.

Besides the presence of the two countries' national flags which represent the close ties and solidarity, what do the other two remarkable objects “hand” and “tree leaf” mean?

Human is the key subject of my art work, because to me, human can create everything.

“The hand” symbolizes "labour", which create materialistic value and spiritual value. And when harvesting season comes, the hand will sow what it reaps.

Regarding the tree leaf, it embodies immortal vitality, the endless flow of life.

The green color of tree leaf reflects exactly what I have observed in Vietnam, which is the incredible revitalization after the ravaging war.

In your country, I have had the chance to eye-witness a true story that despite all obstacles and adversities, things keep being revived and blossoming.

Chilean muralist Gonzalez: Visiting Vietnam was my dream

Gonzalez signing in the catalog book introducing his arts work- a gift for artist Nguyen Thu Thuy, the person who helps execute his painting project (source: Nguyen Thu Thuy's facebook)

What is your feeling when your painting is present on the Vietnamese ceremic wall which stands in the heart of Vietnam?

I am very delighted and honored to be here, observing my work being installed in the capital of Vietnam on a special day - the National Day of Chile (Sep 18).

I am very thankful and highly appreciate Nguyen Thu Thuy and her team for their understanding of my idea, and later perfectly converting it into this beautiful painting.

About the Vietnamese ceremic, it is a very durable material, and one of its advantage is its strong capacity to endure different weather conditions.

We therefore hope that the painting will keep standing firm over time, like the long-standing friendship between Vietnam and Chile.

In the time to come, what are you going to do to help tighten the friendship between two countries?

What I am gonna bring back to my country Chile after this trip will be the stories of the modern Vietnam - that what I have eye witnessed here.

The Chilean people have a special affection for Vietnam, however, because of geographical distance, we hardly find chance to come closer and gain in-depth understandings of your country.

Therefore when I am back to my homeland, I will share with other Chilean artists, as well as all people I meet along the way about the transformation, the progress of Vietnam in the modern time, and the adorable Vietnamese people, who are very kind, friendly and talented.

I hope that my sharing will help further spread and strengthen the love for Vietnam in Chilean people./.

( Phi Yen )

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