Time Ligaments - Contemporary Vietnamese Artists co-curated by Dinh Q. Lê and Zoe Butt Tuan Andrew Nguyen, Christine Nguyen, Bui Cong Khanh, Dinh Q. Lê, Nguyen Thai Tuan, Phu Nam Thuc Ha, Tiffany Chung, Thi Trinh Nguyen
14 May - 16 Aug, 2009



Co-curated by Dinh Q. Lê and Zoe Butt in cooperation with San Art, Ho Chi Minh City

Participating Artists:

Khánh Công Bùi
Tiffany Chung
Phù Nam Thúc Hà
Christine Nguyn
Thi Trinh Nguyn
Tun Andrew Nguyn
Tun Thái Nguyn
Tú Đức Nguyn
Rich Streitmatter - Trn


Exhibition dates: 14 May – 16 August, 2009

Venue: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery ART PROJECTS and ANNEX, Hong Kong

6/F, Chai Wan Industrial City Phase One, 60 Wing Tai Road, Chai Wan


HONG KONG, MAY 2009 — Circulating within our image burdened world are creative wonder that podia the vestiges of mediated fact and control - the crumbling layers of paint on government walls; the memory of a burning, martyred monk; the morphing of local habit with the experiential remnants of a 'European Elsewhere' - these itinerant image makers of Vietnmae contort such hidden shits into concrete form in Time Ligaments.

In this exhibition nine perspectives grapple with the persisting memories of a country where the past stubbornly lingers in the literal and mental landscape of the everyday. Their stories traverse the experience of migration and return; the metamorphosis of popular foreign trend with local custom; the stymied struggle of resistance against historical ideas of social control; or the increasing urban dilettante whose material desires lay waste to their history and surroundings. Time is schizophrenically warped in the photographically paused moments of Tu Duc Nguyen, while Phu Nam Thuc Ha’s lens captures the surfaces of crumbling government walls marveling at how time is the nascent agent of change. In Tuan Thai Nguyen’s careful paintings, where working life holds hostage to ideas of individual social worth, a crouching headless figure dressed in office garb faces a corner of an empty room. Such psychological influence of a neoliberal world is also of great import in the gouache rendered drawings of Khanh Cong Bui and the conceptual sculptures of Tuan Andrew Nguyen, where ideas of deterioration and control are given broader metaphorical context in examining how the tools of a game operate as political strategy in pacifying conflict and terror, not just in Vietnam.

This is but a brief glance of the layered complex narratives in this exhibition where nine provocative artists will be showcased through painting, video, photography, sculptural installation and works on paper.

Zoe Butt is Deputy Director of the Long March Project, a complex, multiplatform, international arts organization and ongoing art project based in Beijing, China. She is also a member of San Art, an independent artist run fallacy and reading room in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Previousy she was Assistant Curator, Contemporary Asian Art at the Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia where she assisted in the development of the Asia-Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT); key acquisitions for the Contemporary Asian art collection, and other associated gallery programs. For over 10 years she has been researching contemporary Asian art and has both independently and collaboratively curated exhibitions and contributed to various international art publications that have reflected the dynamic art of this region.