Asides Jul-Aug 2014

(No.6, Vol.4,Jul-Aug 2014 Vietnam Heritage Magazine)

Royal Vietnamese
art exhibition opens in Paris
Thanh Nien News, 2 June
Artefacts dating back to various feudal Vietnamese dynasties were on display in Paris at the National Museum of Asian Arts – Guimet on 9 July, according to the Vietnam National Museum of History.
Entitled ‘The Flight of the Dragon – Royal Art of Vietnam,’ the exhibition featured 89 artefacts dating back to the Dong Son, a Bronze Age culture centred at the Red River basin in northern Vietnam, as well as Vietnam’s last Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945).
The objects were selected from the archives of the Vietnam National Museum of History, and transferred to the Guimet museum officials from June 18-22. Highlights of the exhibition include a collection of precious Nguyen-era objects carved with images of a dragon, including a golden book, a golden seal and imperial crowns and diadems made of gold and gemstones. The exhibition runs until 15 September.

Choose your side
vietnamnews.vn, 6 June
Pop singer Thu Minh was invited to attend the official launch of #WhoseSideAreYouOn, a new project of the United for Wildlife campaign, at the Google Town Hall in London on 9 June.
The latest campaign asks the next generation to decide which side they are on: the side of critically endangered species or the criminals who kill them for money?
Minh joined footballer David Beckham, tennis player Andy Murray, rugby player Francois Piennaar and other celebrities at the ceremony.

99 species
vietnamnews.vn, 9 June
As many as 99 new species have been found in Vietnam, according to a World Wildlife Fund report released in early June.
The report, titled ‘Nature’s Mysterious Mekong,’ which was announced to celebrate World Environment Day on 5 June, said that a total of 367 new species had been discovered in the Greater Mekong in 2012 and 2013. The region spans Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and China’s south-western Yunnan province.
The discoveries place Vietnam as the country with the third highest amount of new species on the list, after Thailand with 117 newly discovered species and China with 116.

Taste of Vietnam
tuoitrenews.vn, 15 June
After almost one year in the making, ‘Taste of Vietnam’, a television series on Vietnam’s culture, tourism and gastronomy hosted by American chef Robert Danhi, will air on HTV7 at 9 p.m. every Friday, starting 18 July, with 26 episodes.
In the show, Danhi will be featured preparing more than 90 Vietnamese delicacies right on the beach, in the forest or in the paddies, and showcasing the cultural and culinary highlights of the places he has travelled.

New flora, amphibian species
Vietnam News, 16 June
One flora and two amphibian species have been discovered in the central provinces of Khanh Hoa and Lam Dong, creating more demand for the protection of biodiversity around the provinces.
Russian and Vietnamese scientists in the Hanoi-based Vietnam–Russia Tropical Centre have discovered Miguelia cruenta, a new orchid species, in Hon Ba Nature Reserve in Khanh Hoa.
At the nature reserve, the scientists have also found a new amphibian species, spotted toad Kalophrynus honbaensis, which is named after Hon Ba site. In a trip to the Central Highlands Province of Lam Dong, the scientists discovered another new toad species – the bamboo toad Kalophrynus cryptophonus – living in bamboo trees at a height of 800 metres above sea level. Scientists expect better conservation of nature for the protection of the species and other potential species in this rich biodiversity site.

Nguyen documents discovered
cinet.gov.vn, 10 July
Officers in the provincial museum in central Ha Tinh Province have discovered eight titled documents issued by kings under the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945). The documents were found in a village in the province’s Nghi Xuan District.
Issuance of the documents was during many royal reigns; that of Thieu Tri in 1846, Tu Duc in 1850 and 1880, Dong Khanh in 1887, Thanh Thai in 1890, Duy Tan in 1909 and Khai Dinh in 1924.
The documents are decorated with dragon patterns and Chinese-Vietnamese Nom characters printed on poonah. All are in good condition.

Royal welcome for
Nguyen antiques
Vietnam News, 11 July
Items that were once used by kings and royal family members during the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945) are to be returned by France and displayed in Hue.
They were a royal bed that was used by the 10th emperor of the dynasty, King Thanh Thai (1879-1954), and a royal cart that was a gift from the king to his mother for transporting her inside the royal garden within the Imperial Palace in Hue.
The royal bed is made of wood, measures 191cm high, 212cm long and is 140cm wide and displays the royal family's carved pattern. The cart is 136cm high, 230cm long and 102cm wide, and built of wood and metal.
Both items were signed by the Vietnamese artisans who built them. The items are expected to be displayed in Vietnam as national treasures.

LGBT community
gets book
Tuoi Tre News, 11 July
A book featuring mini-stories about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons debuted in July 11 in Ho Chi Minh City.
Titled ‘Xoac Cang Doi Mua Xuan’ (Splitting Her Legs, Waiting for Spring), the book, consisting of about 50 short stories, was published by the Centre for Studies and Applied Science in Gender, Family, Women and Adolescents with the support from the Consulate General of Canada in Ho Chi Minh City in the hope of raising people’s awareness on voices of the LGBT community.
The book was launched at Ca Chep Bookstore at 211-213 Vo Van Tan Street in District 3.

Following the tunes (“Spring comes to Muong Hum hamlet high up the mountains with heart-rocking distant singing…” ) of talented composer Nguyen Tai ...
In the heart of the darkness of Saigon's backpacker land,ambling along down raucous Bui Vien Street and wishing I had not come out without my ear ...
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