Dr. Nguyen Luong Hai Khoi was a Harry & Helen Gray/AICGS Reconciliation Fellow in August and September 2017. He completed his PhD dissertation in the field of Japanese non-dual aesthetics at the Nihon University, Tokyo, Japan, in 2014 and was a visiting researcher at the Hiroshima University, Japan, in 2015. He is the Director of Department of Literature Theory, Faculty of Literature and Linguistics, Hochiminh City University of Education, Vietnam. His research interests concern Japanese social, cultural, and Buddhist philosophy and aesthetics in comparison to those in Vietnam.
While at AICGS, Dr. Nguyen conducted research on his project, “Art and Reconciliation: Beyond the Borders.” Asian countries have a long history of cultural exchanges. Their relations have also been marked by bloody conflicts, which have left some residue of unreconciled historical issues and a need for mutual understanding. In this process of reconciliation, the media, education, and art all have an important role to play. However, in Asian media and in educational and political systems, Asian countries are commonly viewed as a political imagination illustrated through the cultural creation of “historical narratives.” In this way, “Japan,” “China,” “Korea,” “Vietnam,” or “Asia” have been viewed as “imaginative pictures” rather than as political realities. These lenses for seeing one another often have an ideological component that reduces the complex nature of reality in order to serve some nationalist propaganda purpose. Dr. Nguyen’s research analyzes the art work “RE/COVER” of Phan Quang, a contemporary artist in Vietnam. He examines the capacity of artistic creativity to help us to recognize the both history and the reality of Vietnam-Japan relations.
Art and Reconciliation: Beyond the Borders
Relations between Asian countries are influenced by historical consciousness. The expression of that consciousness, which is extremely politicized in Asia, plays an important role in building or destroying modern relationships.