Crafts of Vietnam
Vietnam has a treasure trove of traditional crafts. Some have their origins in other traditions (Chinese, Indian, Malay, European,...) but over the centuries, they have evolved and are anchored in the Vietnamese culture.
These are small communities where people work together to make things like knives, mats, bamboo bird cages, chopsticks, ceramics and dozens of other items. Most craft villages are located in Northern Vietnam, mainly clustered around Hanoi.
The typical and internationally famous forms of craftsmanship
It is an art that involves a very long and laborious process that can take about 100 days with 20 successive steps. While colors were initially limited to black, red and brown, other pigments were introduced over time. Today we find a whole range of decorative products, vases, paintings,... in a multitude of vibrant colors!
During the 19th and 20th centuries, French influence was absorbed into Vietnamese art, and the use of liberal and modern style colors began to differentiate Vietnamese silk paintings from those of Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Chinese influences.
The paintings generally represent country landscapes, pagodas, historical events and scenes from everyday life. The beautiful combination of delicate hues and the silk background create a magical effect.
Popular art with a long history in Vietnam, Vietnamese woodcuts have reached a high level of popularity outside the country. Many organic materials can be used to make paint that can be applied to wood or pressed onto paper.
This hand-crafted art is rooted in Vietnamese culture and dates back more than 700 years. It is kept alive by local artisans, ethnic minorities and artists. The embroidery is characterized by the use of tiny multicolored threads to create fine lines in a harmonious blend of vibrant colors. Pillow cases, tablecloths, paintings, etc...are made
Ceramics and pottery
The tradition of ceramics in Vietnam dates back thousands of years, flourishing in the Ly dynasty (1010-1225). Strongly influenced by China, ceramists have also been inspired by other cultures (Cambodia, India). However, the Vietnamese style is very distinct, considered today as one of the most beautiful and most exported around the world.
The richness and diversity of Vietnam's ethnic handicrafts can be seen in many shops and galleries in major cities. Advanced skills include embroidery, weaving, dyeing and jewelry making.