Spending My Morning At Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum

Posted by : foongpc | Friday, May 15, 2015 | Published in


On my fifth and last day in Hanoi, I visited the Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum. Located just across the street from the Temple Of Literature, the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum showcases Vietnam's fine arts from different historical periods.

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My friend had already taken the early morning flight back to KL so I would be going solo again just like my first day in Hanoi.

The museum was housed in a colonial-style building, which was formerly a Catholic girls boarding school.  Entrance ticket was a very reasonable 20,000 VND (about US$1) and you are allowed to take as many pictures as you like! However, you need to keep your backpack in the locker which they provide free of charge.

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I have to say that the three-storey building itself is a work of art! Don't you agree?

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The exhibits in the museum were arranged chronologically from the bottom to the top floor. I started with a room at the ground floor which contains some pretty ancient stuffs, probably from the prehistoric era.

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Many types of axes and spears.

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Bronze drum (on the right) dating back to 300 years BC.

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A belt buckle (left) and ancient bronze bells (middle and right).

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A statue of a man kneeling down and carrying lamp in both hands.

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I did not take pictures of all the exhibits - only the more interesting ones. I continued walking towards the right to cover the entire ground floor exhibits.

Here is a statue of the Buddha.

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Sakyamuni Buddha on snowy mount

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King Ly Nam De and the Queen. King Ly Nam De is considered by many to be the first emperor of Vietnam and founder of the Early Ly Dynasty.

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Giving lecture

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Buddhanandi made from lacquered wood

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Buddhist cultural images from the Tay Son period.

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Were these on the first floor of the museum? I could not remember, but they probably were.

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An incense pillar. This is not a real incense pillar but a reproduction. It seems that many exhibits in this museum are reproductions as many of the original items were destroyed during the Vietnam War.

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There's a section where they were many wood carvings on display.

Fighting against a tiger.

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Two man playing a ball game - a work of art from the 17th century.

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Depiction of a young girl.

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Can you guess what game is this carving trying to depict?

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No, not kung fu. It's boxing!

A giant Dragon and fairies riding on mini dragons.

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Door carved with dragon images.

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The phoenix and her cubs

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This one is pretty remarkable - The One Thousand Eye And One Thousand Arm Guan Yin.

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A closer shot

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Duchess Yen

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Buddha entering Nirvana. Yes if you must know, this pose was when Buddha was dying and entering Nirvana.

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Scene of everyday life.

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Legendary lion

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Puppet offering incense sticks

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Majucri Bodhisattva

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Princess Trinh Thi Ngoc Co

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Fairies and a fairy riding a dragon (bottom right)

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Buddha Guan Yin

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Duke Nguyen The My

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Amitabha Buddha

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A closer shot.

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The room where the statue of Amitabha Buddha was placed.

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More carvings on the wall, but I did not take pictures of them all.

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A side shot of the Buddha Guan Yin with thousand arms.

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The room where the statues reside.

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Not exactly sure what this was.

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A hideous looking creature at the top. I could not find any labels or information anywhere near it.

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OK, there is information regarding this building, but I forgot to take a shot so I really have no idea what building this is!

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Sculpture of a Lion.

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Not your usual lion, but one of those mythical creatures.

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Garuda beating the drum.

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A portrait

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Nice piece of art!

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Finished with the first floor exhibits, I walked up to the second floor. This is the passageway of the first floor, I think.

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Mother and child sculpture at the corridor.

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Many sculptures displayed along the corridor.

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On the second floor, there were some war related bronze sculptures on display.

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Rice jar to feed the army

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The caption for this reads "While eating its fruits, think of those who have grown the tree".

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I like the expression on the faces of these sculptures.

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I took some time to take a view outside the opened window of the museum building.

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Pretty nice view, no?

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Back to the exhibits. This one depicts a lady sharpening the bamboo spikes.

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A drawing simply titled "Miss Lien". I wonder who she is!

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Kim Dong

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Cock fighting

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I kind of like this sculpture!

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Reading a book

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A handful of land from the South

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Very nice sculptures!

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Dien Bien Phu victory

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Oil on canvas titled "Central Region".

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I completed the whole tour of the museum in about one and a half hour. I could have taken longer but time was not really on my side. As it was my last day in Hanoi, I had to make full use of my time as I still have several places that I needed to visit.

Overall, the Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum is worth visiting and I would certainly recommend it as part of your itinerary in Hanoi.