Over the past 55 years, with over 20,000 artifacts, the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum has gradually affirmed its brand as a national cultural institution.

Reflecting the development stages of Vietnamese fine arts

Currently, the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum holds the leading position in preserving and promoting the value of the cultural and artistic heritages of Vietnamese ethnic communities with over 20,000 artifacts including nine national treasures. These reflect the development stages of Vietnam’s fine arts, with many works that show great pride in the careers of generations of Vietnamese painters and sculptors.

Generations of staff of the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum have constantly made efforts to perform their mission of researching, collecting, preserving, displaying, educating and promoting the value of fine arts heritages. Since its inception, the Museum has regularly organised many field trips at the relic sites of many localities around the country to collect more ancient works as well as sculptures, paintings and graphic works from the private collections of domestic and foreign painters and sculptors in order to complement its treasure trove of near-modern arts.

In the last 5 years (2016-2021), the Museum has deployed and accepted 15 grassroots-level scientific research projects and two ministerial-level projects; organised many scientific seminars on fine arts and museum work; and released many publications. Generations of narrators and guides at the Museum have painstakingly collected artifacts, develop outlines and displayed them in an attractive and solemn manner, as a "bridge" between the art world and the public.

Following its 55 years, the Museum’s educational activities have also made important changes, from their form of introduction intomore fixed thematic presentations. Experiential educational activities have been held more regularly, making visitors’ experiences more engaging.

“A creative space for children” has been established and operated frequently. In addition, many fine arts experience activities have been held outside the Museum, receiving the support and attention of the public. The Museum has also signed memoranda of cooperation with several schools and universities related to tourism and the fine arts in order to bring students to the museum. The number of students coming to the Museum has increased by 20%, contributing to an increase in the proportion of domestic visitors from 17% (in 2016) to 30% (in 2019).

Proactive digital transformation in the Museum’s activities

The Vietnam Fine Arts Museum’s website https://vnfam.vn is the official communication channel that promotes its images and activities. It is a modern and user-friendly website with scientific and accessible information. In addition to basic information about the Museum, viewers can admire hundreds of images and read articles about fine art works and their authors as well as information and video clips on exhibitions and events.

Since 2019, the Museum has used a fanpage on the social network Facebook to create an information channel and improve their interaction with the public. During the COVID-19 pandemic and the social distancing period in 2020, a set of paintings praising doctors and medical staff who voluntarily worked at the front lines and dedicated themselves to taking care of patients was introduced via its website and fanpage. The Museum has also promoted fine arts works on the 45th anniversary of national reunification and 130th birthday anniversary of President Ho Chi Minh. The posting of art works at the right time has attracted the attention of the press and media, contributing to creating a positive social effect.

Determining the human factor still a prerequisite for the existence and development of the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum, its leaders have invested in training human resources to improve their professional capacity, creating a favourable working environment for them, and boosting scientific and technological applications to optimise work quality, meeting the society’s changes. This has always been one of the focuses in both their short-term and long-term strategies.

The Museum has been making efforts to enhance its identity, refresh its image and pay more attention to visitors’ experiences to bring itself closer to the public, especially young people.

The year 2021 marks the 55-year journey of the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum and is one which has also witnessed drastic changes in the whole society in general and in museum work in due to COVID-19 epidemic and the impact of scientific and technological advances.

The Vietnam Fine Arts Museum has not been left out of the digital transformation trend but instead has proactively participated in applying modern technology into all of its professional activities such as the management of artifacts, library materials, archiving, communication and exhibitions.

At the end of April, the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum was the first of this kind in Vietnam to launch iMuseum VFA, a multimedia presentation app (a combination of sound, image and articles) across eight languages (Vietnamese, English, French, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Italian and Spanish) to serve visitors in both online and direct form.

The app quickly received the positive feedback of visitors, experts and artists in the fine arts world. It is also useful for tour operators to save time and reduce their reliance on on-site guides. This is a testament to the direction of the Museum in applying information technology to innovate and improve itsservice quality.

On the occasion of the 55th anniversary of the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum, commemorative activities have been held invirtual form due to the complicated development of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many useful and interesting activities have been posted on the Museum’s media channels to mark the 55-year milestone such as a guide to the Museum’s buildings; painter Nguyen Do Cung; research, collection, display and education activities; a 3DTour around the Museum; and its national treasures.

The Vietnam Fine Arts Museum has been making strong changes to continue its journey of preserving and honouring thevalues of national cultural and artistic heritage, affirming its position and value in the museum system of Vietnam.