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Dossiers on Dong Ho folk painting to be appraised

The National Cultural Heritage Council will appraise dossiers on the Vietnamese folk art of Dong Ho painting later this year, then complete them before submitting to the Prime Minister.

The dossiers are being compiled by the VietnamNational Institute of Culture and Art Studies under the Ministry of Culture,Sports and Tourism in a bid to secure UNESCO recognition as intangible culturalheritage of emergency protection.

If recognised, this traditional art could berevived and its value promoted.

Vietnam has been submitting dossiers on Thensinging of the Tay, Nung and Thai ethnic groups, Xoe dance of the Thai ethnicgroup, and pottery making of the Cham ethnic people to seek UNESCO recognition.Dong Ho folk painting has been recognised as national intangible culturalheritage.

According to statistics, there are only threeartisans and 20 practitioners in this job, and only two old people are able toteach this kind of art.

It is a genre of Vietnamese woodcut paintingsoriginating from Dong Ho village in Bac Ninh province. Using the traditionaldiep paper and colours derived from nature, craftsmen print Dong Ho pictures ofdifferent themes from good luck wishes and historical figures to everydayactivities and folk allegories.

It is considered a fine reflection of thetraditional aesthetic value, social philosophies and humanitarian desires asspring approaches.
Elements ofeveryday life are well integrated in Dong Ho painting so that it can be used toexpress the thoughts and wishes of people. 

Because Dong Ho paintings are mainly bought anddisplayed on the occasion of Tet, the Lunar New Year, contents of pictures areoften humorous, optimist with many bright and powerful colours  like red, yellow or white. Some Dong Hopaintings became famous for their interesting themes.

According to locals, the making of Dong Hopainting has dated back to the 11th century during the reign of the Ly Dynasty;while researchers propose that craftsmen began to print pictures in Dong Hovillage during the rule of the Le Dynasty in the 17th century.-VNA


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