Dinh Q. Le

(Born in Vietnam, 1968, lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City)

Imaginary Country, 4-channel video projection, 2006.

Dinh Q. Lê was born in Vietnam in 1968 and emigrated to the United States with his family at the age of ten. It took him time to learn English, so he began to look at art books, introducing himself to Western art history. In college, Lê began studying photography and eventually began to experiment with image combinations, interweaving cut strips of photographs. These photo-weavings made reference to his aunt’s grass mats that he remembered watching her weave as a child in Vietnam but also enacted the tricky representations of myth and reality that characterized his adapted culture, particularly in how it interpreted the world of his family’s past.

His return to Vietnam allowed Lê to engage in a more extensive examination of the society to which he was repatriating, and in subsequent years Lê expanded his artistic range to include sculptural interventions in public spaces and a series of works involving satirical photo essays, as well as collections of found Vietnamese photographs and a large kinetic installation. His work was the subject of a mid-career retrospective organized by The Asia Society in New York City in 2006.

For Saigon Open City Lê will exhibit a video installation, using four video projectors. Lê filmed  people, who, like himself, experienced the Vietnamese diaspora: "The juxtaposition of a group of people walking out into the sea and a group of young individuals talking about their imagined Vietnams immediately creates a field of tension….Particularly affecting are the statements about the past which cannot be changed and Vietnam being a glamourous drug…. For this is the glittering attraction of Dinh's work - a horizon which we all seem to have been a part of and yet it is a shifting landscape which transforms our assumed 'belonging' into a mirage of the everyday and the epic….."
(Ong Keng Sen)

Tiếng Việt