Born: 1976 in Hai Duong province

Educated: Hanoi Fine Art University

In today’s art scene in Vietnam it is quite common to encounter families where all members are engaged in a career in painting.  Children follow their parents turning a vocation into a family tradition.  These children are raised in an environment infused with creativity and art.  They breathe in the smells of oils and the feel of the brushes before they are old enough to understand the nature of the profession they are forced to view artistic creativity in a more detached professional way.

Other painters do not have the advantage of being raised in such an environment.  They come to the world of art as if drawn by destiny.  For such artists it is often very interesting to consider the early period of their creative activity.  For such artists this it is particularly difficult in the beginning to find the means of expressing themselves.  We often feel great energy and emotion in their early work.  The most outstanding example of this phenomenon in the past decade is the artist Tran Viet Phu.  Today we are meeting another example in Pham Dinh Hoang.  In contrast to Tran Viet Phu’s pursuit of a more realistic style, Hoang chose to focus on abstraction.

Although he studies at Hanoi’s Fine Art Industrial University, Hoang never thought that he would be a designer like his fellow students.  Instead he focused his energies primarily on his drawing classes.  He hoped one day to use his skills to work with oils.

In the works of Pham Dinh Hoang, distinct figures and shapes disappear.  Hoang pours his deepest and most profound thoughts onto his canvasses. In these canvasses we feel the speed of Hoang’s drawing and the movement of his strong hand with the brush.  The colors play out like a dance on his canvas.  They form images such a crowd of people hurrying along at rush hour.  We feel the cool of a light summer morning from the “street balcony” of his studio, and the heat and darkness of a discotheque and the smoke and smells of the bar where he worked some time as a bartender.


In some of Hoang’s work we can feel the slow melody of jazz music.  Some of his recent works have been done primarily in white and black.  These works remind us of works of eastern calligraphy on rice paper. It seems Hoang understands from his very soul how his art will integrate the spirit of the Orient into western artistic traditions.

We are just beginning to witness the flowering of Pham Dinh Hoang’s artistic creativity.  These works indicate a bright future as this promising talent continues to mature.   

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