Ho Chi Minh City, formally known as Saigon (although they are not exactly the same) can be quite overwhelming. Loud chaos, a sea of infamous motorcycles and suicidal street crossings. Cascades of smells, the good kind and the bad, in the ever-present blanket of humidity. Heat reflected from the asphalt, masses of tourists heading to see the portrait of Mr. Ho Chi Minh inside the French Colonial style post office. Next door, the Notre-Dame Cathedral provides a shelter from the midday sun.
The Museum of Fine Arts is somehow overlooked, or at least it is not a first choice on a traveller’s menu and I think it should be. This building from the colonial-period houses a great number of paintings, sketches, statues and objects ranging from traditional to avant-garde.
The entrance fee is negligible and there are three buildings to explore! Although I have to say that for me, it is the bulidings that hold a quiet charm and enhance the beauty of the art displayed. Perfect symbiosis. Chinese style French colonial architecture, whatever that means. I am no expert, but look at the intricate design on the windows and the beautifully stained glass! The wooden railings and the different styles of staircases!
April 12th – 17th 2017