Unspoken Dialogue

Recent Works by Le Thiet Cuong

March 14th - April 19th, 2003 Plum Blossoms Gallery New York

Cuong・s work addresses life・s continual transformation by conflating Buddhist ideals and the lessons of the I-Ching, the Book of Changes. His focus is on the value of awareness, compassion, simplicity and detachment, as protection from the upheavals that tend to dominate life. These lessons are especially relevant in today・s politically anxious climate. Throughout his work Cuong manipulates several distinct symbols to create rich images that exhort us to mindfully and joyfully navigate life・s twists and turns. Therein lies the message of Cuong・s Unspoken Dialogue.

This exhibition also features several new sculptures, both in lacquered fiberglass, and painted steel. The steel works are of inwardly arched sheets painted with a deep red enamel, titled Prayer I, II and III. They evoke the nature of a Buddhist monk. The lacquered fiberglass works consist of both organic leaf forms with applied gold and silver leaf and of busts which are reminiscent of the simplified heads of the figures in Cuong・s paintings.

Unspoken Dialogue is timed to coincide with the American Museum of Natural History・s Vietnam Journeys of Body, Mind and Spirit and with The Buddhism Project, a city-wide exploration of the many and varied relationships of Buddhism and the arts presented at venues throughout New York.
Cuong was born in 1962 in Hanoi, and is part of a generation that has seen enormous changes within his country. To escape the bombing of the Vietnamese capital he was evacuated as a young child to Bin Da village in the Vietnamese countryside. In 1985 after serving in the Army as a cartographer and working as a farm hand, he enrolled at the Vietnamese State Film College in Hanoi where he studied animation. After graduation Cuong was introduced to Tay Tang, a Vietnamese version of the Tibetan Buddhist practice of Dzogchen, which has greatly influenced his philosophy and his artwork. Cuong・s work was first shown in 1991 in Hanoi, since then he has gained an international reputation with exhibitions in Bangkok, Zurich, London, Stuttgart, and Paris. He has also had successful solo exhibitions with Plum Blossoms in Hong Kong and in Singapore in 1995, 1997 and 1999. His painting, :The Changing Eye; is now in the collection of The Singapore Art Museum. He is married and lives in Hanoi.
Point of View, 1999
Copyright 2003 Plum Blossoms Gallery and Le Thiet Cuong. All rights reserved.