Connecting Artist – Vietnam and South Africa
12 April 2016
“Soweto felt like home to me,” said Ms Vu Kim Thu, the Vietnamese artist in residence. She was referring to the vibrant township neighbourhood, and comparing the enterprising spirit of the township dwellers to those in her native Vietnam. The entrepreneurs in Hanoi use their homes to create business opportunities to economically sustain themselves, she said.
Thu is also a yoga instructor. The income generated from her yoga classes supports her passion for art.She spent 5 weeks in Johannesburg, South Africa as a fellow of the Sylt Foundation. The Foundation connects artist around the world initiating and supporting innovative contemporary literary, visual art and performance projects with the aim to encourage cultural dialogue and artistic interaction.
Photo: Ambassador Le Huy Hoang of Vietnam to South Africa introduces Ms Vu Kim Thu at a presentation at the Embassy of Vietnam in Pretoria.
Thu Kim Vu was born into a family of artists in 1976 in Hanoi, Vietnam. She graduated her BFA from Hanoi University of Fine Arts in 1999, and her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, United States in 2003.
Her focus is on line drawing, paper and using temporary spaces. Through her many residences around the world she creates new experiences of her travel, based on how her line drawings change the atmosphere of each space.
The Sylt Foundation offers international multi-disciplinary artists, performers and writers the opportunity to live and work in the quiet environment on the island of Sylt, in Johannesburg or at other places, where the Foundation works together with its partners.
There is also a possibility of a residency for an artist from Southern Africa in Hanoi at a later stage of the programme.