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Nguyen Trinh Thi

Artist 131

Nguyen Trinh Thi Video artist

Nguyen Trinh Thi (born 1973) is a Hanoi-based independent filmmaker, documentarian and video artist who leans towards the evocation of memory and remembrance as a means of accessing obscured or unwritten stories.

She is deeply engaged with socio-cultural concerns and the confrontation of contentious and polarizing local issues, all of which are bound to restrictions that surround censorship and limited creative freedoms in Vietnam.

She is known for her layered, personal, and poetic approach to contentious histories and current events through experiments with the moving image.

Her practice has consistently investigated the role of memory in the necessary unveiling of hidden, displaced, or misinterpreted histories, often making use of original documentary footage or undertaking extensive investigative field work.

Inspired by her heritage, her pieces are powerful and haunting, and focus on social and cultural issues — especially the complex, traumatic history of her home country Vietnam and its after-effects in the present.

Her practice traverses boundaries between film, video art, installation and performance.

She is regarded as one of the pioneers of Viêt Nam's independent cinema, and plays an important role the country's cinema; after studying journalism and photography overseas she decided to return to Vietnam to pursue a career as an independent filmmaker at a time when this concept was still foreign and filmmaking was very difficult due to censorship.

Thi worked together with a group of filmmakers and artists to elaborate a concept for a centre for documentary films and video art, described as "a centre with its focus on education, art, research and experimentation".

Here a community of committed young filmmakers who are increasingly networked with the international scene has been formed, thereby pushing open a door to the world for Vietnamese documentary films.


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