Trần Lương (b.1960 in Hanoi, Vietnam) is a performance and visual artist, independent curator, and major figure in creating space for critical contemporary art in North Vietnam. Among the first local artists to experiment with performance and video, his artwork is grounded in local experience. Challenging socio-political legacies and policies that repress individual expression, his work offering moving reflections on the impact of ideology on the body, particularly the internalization of political repression at a young age.
Active in making opportunities for artists, Trần co-founded the Gang of Five (1983-1996), which organized monthly exhibitions in alternative spaces. In 1998, he co-founded Nha San Studio, the country’s first artist-led, experimental art space, and curated the majority of its exhibitions in the initial four years. He was Founding Director of the National Hanoi Contemporary Art Centre in 2000; he resigned in 2003 in protest at government corruption.
Trần Lương graduated from the Vietnam University of Fine Arts in 1983. He currently lives and works in Hanoi, Vietnam.
'Mạo Khê Coal Mine project' documents a creative camp initiated by Tran Luong in 2001, where he invited 11 visual artists from Hanoi to participate. In response to the many costly and superficial ‘field trips to make artwork’ organized by public state institutions, Mạo Khê project was a reaction to the bureaucracy that had increased in the local art scene. According to the artist, “After the war, governmental subsidized field trips were more or less picnics for lazy artists on social care. Being called ‘field trips’, they were no different from sitting in the artists’ studios, making up the works because ‘field trip’ or ‘reality’ was censored’. Thus, almost all works were created in a rosy direction, the true breath of life not reflected in art and culture.”
Theme: Special Feature: Vietnam