The former diplomat collected the two lacquer paintings, Kieu Hanh (Proud) and Nhung Nu Hon Tinh Yeu (Kisses of Love), when she worked in Vietnam from 1997 to 2001.

Berends bought the two paintings from artist Phung Pham and brought the paintings with her in her later terms in other countries, before returning to the Netherlands.

Although she left Vietnam more than 20 years ago, her memories and love for the country have never faded away. The diplomat then headed to the Vietnamese Embassy in the Netherlands to express her desire to donate the paintings to the Vietnamese people.

At the handover ceremony, the museum’s representative expressed respect for the former deputy ambassador and thanked Vietnamese Ambassador to the Netherlands Pham Viet Anh, for his efforts to bring the paintings back to Vietnam.

The event also saw the participation of artist Phung Pham who said that he was moved to see his paintings become part of the museum’s collection.