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|Many citizens living along Au Co Street are disappointed with the plan to demolish 600m of Hanoi's ceramic mosaic mural. - Photo kenh14.vn|
The expansion of the street, which is the second phase of a project for an overpass at the An Dương - Thanh Niên intersection, has started. The demolition of a section of the mural, which spans almost 4km along the Song Hong Dyke, has been criticised by citizens, particularly the artist behind the work.
“I feel great pity. It is a waste to demolish a part of this ceramic mural. I have lived here for 50 years and found the road looked more beautiful with the ceramic art. I hope that the mural is restored after the project is finished,” said Ngo Thi Tien, a resident on Au Co Street.
According to artist Nguyen Thu Thuy, director of the New Hanoi Arts Company – directly involved in designing and building the ceramic mural since 2007 – the part to be demolished includes many meaningful parts, like the images of Hanoi streets by Bui Xuan Phai and images of the International Labour Organisation.
“After Hanoi finishes expanding the road, I would like to ask for funding to rebuild the demolished part as it is the demonstration of the love of international organisations for the city, in addition to the efforts of the artists,” said Thuy.
“We feel deeply sorry. It is the joint efforts of the collective, of the artists and sponsors who have come up with the meaningful outline and spent a lot of time creating every single ceramic piece of the paintings,” she continued.
The painter recalled that teams worked hard despite severe weather conditions and difficulties to help the mural break the Guinness World Record on Hanoi’s 1,000th-birthday in 2010.
“We worked in harsh weather conditions along with all-day-long traffic. We strived to overcome difficulties, with the enthusiastic support of the households living behind the dyke who have helped us with water and electricity. Many restaurants even offered us free meals.
“The demolition of nearly 600 metres of the mural affects its world record. I will have to report to Guinness World Record with the promise that I will compensate, and even break a new record with an additional 1,000m. Hanoi will certainly break its own record,” Thuy said.