The Best Types of Vietnamese Art and How To Hang It in Your Kosmo Tay Ho Apartment

If you are moving into a brand new apartment in Hanoi, you are going to need some amazing Vietnamese art to match. Kosmo Tay Ho shares five of the best types of art in the country and how you can showcase it in your home…

by Kosmo Tay Ho

The Best Types ...

Art can add a new dimension to the walls of any home. Not only can it bring a splash of colour to a room, it can also reflect your style and personality. Everything from the colour palette to the frame that the art is hung in can significantly change the overall effect of your décor.

Vietnam offers a fantastic selection of art to suit everyone, ranging from large, dramatic paintings to small, dainty illustrations. The vast array of art allows you to combine your own personal taste with what the country’s artists do best. Here are a few of the most desirable types of Vietnamese art on the market right now…


1. Abstract Art

Hà Mạnh Thắng – Far In The North


If you prefer interesting shapes and colours to realistic landscapes or portraits, abstract art is the perfect choice for your new apartment walls. It is not the most common-place type of art in Vietnam, but the few local artists who choose to create art in an abstract style do so incredibly. As this type of art is not particularly popular in the country yet, anyone who displays abstract art in their home can be fairly sure that their friends will not have anything like it.

How To Hang It:

Because abstract art often relies on shapes and colours, choosing the perfect spot for an abstract piece very much relies on the colours of your rooms. One you have picked the perfect room to display your abstract art, we recommend hanging it in the centre of a wall to offset the asymmetrical style of the painting itself.

Thuộc series Lam – Lê Quý Tông

Recommended Local Artists:

  • Pham An Hai for striking abstract paintings based on particular colours and tones.
  • Ha Manh Thang for abstract style combined with images of urban architecture.

2. Vietnamese Embroidery

From tribal designs to the more modern-looking patterns, Vietnamese embroidery is not just something you can use for fashion. With the rise of hip Airbnb homes and concept hotels across the country, the trend of hanging traditional Vietnamese embroidery has suddenly been revived. One great example is the traditional H’mong tribal design that has been making a lot of appearances lately. But if you are more into minimalist designs, then the modern patterns would be best for you.

How To Hang It:

As Vietnamese embroidery is full of patterns and texture, the key to hanging one of these pieces is finding the right lighting to showcase them. There is no point putting one of these detailed pieces of work on the wall unless you can really admire the handiwork of it. Find an area in your apartment with great natural light or purchase your own lights to show off this type of art.


3. Traditional Vietnamese Paintings

In the past, Vietnamese art has been practised on a variety of different materials, such as silk and wood. Today, it is still easy to find pieces of art on many of these traditional materials as well as on a modern canvas. Choosing the material of a Vietnamese traditional piece of art is almost as important as the image itself as different materials can accentuate different parts of your room or furniture.

How To Hang It:

Thầy Tào – Nguyễn Đức Phương


To avoid making traditional art looking too old fashioned in a modern home, try framing the image with a wide border and a simple frame. Embellished or patterned frames and a lack of white space around images can sometimes make traditional art look out of place in contemporary homes. Many art lovers choose to display traditional paintings on wood-mounted canvas.

Recommended Local Artists:

  • Lam Manh for oil paintings of traditional scenes in Vietnam.
  • Luong Dung for sepia tone images of women in traditional Ao dai.
  • Vu Tuan for a vibrant take on traditional silk painting.
  • Thai Vinh Thanh for paintings of bygone Vietnam with a modern, three-tone twist.
  • Tran Minh Tam for art focusing on Vietnam’s rich cultural heritage and historical figures. 


4. Traditional Lacquerware

Hoa xương rồng – Nguyễn Trần Cường


Lacquerware, objects decorated by lacquer, originated in China around 10,000 years ago. The Vietnamese adopted the technique in later years and mastered the skill in their own style. More commonly known here as sơn mài, the locals took the practice and turned it into a fine art that is now seen in markets and galleries, both big and small, from north to south. In Vietnam, most lacquerware comes in the form of small objects, like bowls and wine holders, which can be both decorative and functional.

How To Display:

Vietnamese lacquerware can be found on a variety of objects, including kitchenware, tableware, vases, and more. Unlike many other types of art, it is not limited to being hung on the wall. Lacquerware can be shown off in everyday life, whether you use patterned bowls for dinner every night or display flowers in a lacquer vase. This type of art allows people to have a much more practical appreciation of their favourite patterns, colours, and artistic styles.

5. Emerging Artists

There’s no better way to support the growing Vietnamese art scene than by buying work of emerging artists. There are a number of art galleries in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City that frequently exhibit the work of up-and-coming artists. Shows like Art For You bring the work of emerging artists together and sell pieces at affordable prices. We recommend heading straight to one of these exhibitions for a unique and fun way to discover the perfect pieces of art for your home.

How To Hang It:

Lỗi – Nguyễn Đình Hoàng Việt


Vietnam’s emerging artists have such a range of styles that it is difficult to suggest one way to hang their work. Though, the great thing about new artists is that they are often very happy to speak to customers — try asking the artists themselves for recommendations on how to best showcase their work.

Recommended Local Artists:

  • Danh Viet Linh for paintings on paper using strong shapes and colours.
  • Xuan Lam for a modern take on traditional Vietnamese art using reds, greens and browns.
  • Shishi Nguyen for pretty, warm colours and gentle watercolours.
  • Xuan Loc Xuan (or Nguyen Xuan Loc) for pastel-coloured illustrations and candid portraits.

6. Propaganda Posters

“Visually arresting, cheap and effective, Vietnamese propaganda posters weren’t meant to last, but their messages were,” says Dean Irvine, journalist for CNN Travel. Regarded as one of the most sought-after travel souvenirs in Vietnam as well as one of the most famous types of Vietnamese art, the propaganda posters of the Vietnam War are both bold and stylish, as well as a significant piece of history.

How To Hang It:

Most Vietnam War propaganda posters have a similar style so they look great in groups. We recommend framing and hanging a few posters in a row. Alternatively, display the posters on a shelf or table with rustic ornaments.

7. Contemporary Art

Ký ức tuổi thơ – Ngô Văn Sắc


The rise of contemporary Vietnamese artists from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh has seen a tremendous growth over the years, after the fall of Saigon and the reunification of North and South Vietnam. Local modern art can be a great way to show off the quirky side of your personality. As part of the objective of contemporary art is to create dynamic new methods and concepts, it is no surprise that there is a diverse choice of this style of art. Choosing a piece of modern art for your home not only gives you the opportunity to express your personality, it can also be a great conversation starter for guests.

How To Hang It:

One common trait of most contemporary art pieces is that they often demand attention. No matter where you put modern art, it will likely catch your visitors’ attention. However, as it can be quite eye-catching, it is best to limit each room to only one or two pieces of contemporary art on the walls, unless you choose to display a number of similar pieces from the same artist.

Recommended Local Artists:

  • Dinh Q Le for art that combines eye-catching shapes with historic images.
  • Nguyen Manh Hung for strange and wonderful paintings and digital images.
  • Pham Huy Thong for contemporary art with a sense of humour.  
  • Ngo Van Sac for unique images made by wood carving and wood burning.

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Buy smart, live well with Kosmo Tay Ho

Kosmo Tay Ho apartments are not only a place to hang beautiful art, they are a work of art themselves. Come and see for yourself! Visit kosmotayho.com or call +84 901 839 666 now to book your free, no-obligation tour.