Artist and curator Tran Kuong and his wife talking with artist Mai Van Hien (1923-2006) outside Salon Natasha on the occasion of Maritta Nurmi's solo exhibition 'Under The Mountain'.
The exhibition 'Under The Mountain' was inspired by Greek mythology, more precisely the myth of Hephaestus, the God of blacksmiths and artisans. The diagnostic metal effects in Nurmi's works answered to the craftsmanship of Hephaestus. It also implied, with reference to the myth, that one could still reclaim the knowledge and willpower even when ostracised and isolated 'under the mountain'.
Finnish artist Maritta Nurmi worked and lived in Hanoi since 1994. She started with traditional lacquer paintings in the early days of her artistic practice, and later invented her own 'silver technique' of lacquer on canvas. She had been an active artist in Salon Natasha in the 1990s.
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