Dong Ho – Hang Trong paintings

Traditionally, every year when New-year comes, colourful paintings are on sales from cities to countrysides, from lowlands to highlands, that make Tết atmosphere more happy.

As religious beliefs, more people prefer New-year paintings. Sometimes hand-made pictures are in short supply, painters have to print and for generations pictures get produced by printing on wood scripts.

Famous are paintings from Đông Hồ (Hà Bắc), Hàng Trống (Hanoi), Kim Hoàng (Hà Tây), Nam Hoành (Nghệ An), Sình (Huế), in the South and in mountainous areas. But best known are paintings from Đông Hồ and Hàng Trống.

It’s different from others in materials and painting techniques. Đông Hồ artists print pictures on wooden scripts. Colours and carvings are made on wooden boards with chisels while Hàng Trống painters make with knives and chisels.

Đông Hồ artisans print colours first, then the carvings, so many pictures need so many carvings and they use poona-paper to keep long the colours. Ink is made of kinds of grass, plants, fruit, soil that have natural colours that are mixed in with rice-powder. So the paintings can live long.

These pictures do not need framing in glass, just sticking on the walls…Hàng Trống paintings are made in Hàng Trống street (Hà Nội) or in other region of the same style and mostly paintings for worship. Hàng Trống pictures are both painted and printed, the images and style are very flexible and active to meet buyers’ demands.

Hàng Trống pictures sometimes are made very large to be hung on high buildings. Hàng Trống pictures depict daily life activities, but almost for worships. Đông Hồ and Hàng Trống paintings are in fast increase to meet ever -growing sense of beauty of the Hanoians and foreigners during Tết.

Hiền Thanh

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