Lacquer craft in Vietnam


In Vietnam, traces of lacquer craft have been found since many centuries BC. The most primitive lacquer artefacts preserved today are gilded wooden or earthen statues from the Le Dynasty in around the 15th century.

To create a product, the lacquer worker must go through 9-10 different stages, from making the body (core); bundling the cuttings so that the product is waterproof, free from termites and shrinkage due to weather; color spraying; decorating; grinding; Polishing… Traditional lacquer is categorized into 3 basic types: optical paint used on rattan, bamboo and wooden items such as boxes, trays, etc. with light dyeing is very common ; gilded lacquer is often used in noble, solemn and sacred places such as: high and narrow tables, worshiping statues, couplets, palanquins…; and embossed lacquer is the most unique technique, used and crafted in interior decoration, royal palace with many rich and sophisticated pattern details.

Famous Vietnamese lacquer villages still exist nowadays include: Ha Thai village (Thuong Tin, Hanoi); Cat Dang village (Y Yen, Nam Dinh); Tuong Binh Nghiep village (Thu Dau Mot, Binh Duong)…

The pinnacle of lacquer is the art of lacquer painting, which was very developed in Vietnam in the early 20th century, creating a unique painting style for Indochina fine arts.

Vietnamese Fine Arts Lacquer Factory “Maison – Sonmai”

Lacquer brand “Maison – Sonmai” is located in the traditional Ha Thai lacquer village, Hanoi. The products are crafted by artisans based on traditional lacquer – inlaid pearls, carefully crafted by hands. The iridescent color of mussels and snails contrasts on a black or red lacquer background create a magical and luxurious effect, but still retains the traditional features.

Vietnamese fine art uses ancient Vietnamese patterns, rearranges the layout, contemporary dithering, bringing a new creative, modern, highly applicable, and aesthetic style to a traditional product.