Children's paintings demonstrate love for peace in Japan, Vietnam

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Paintings about war and peace by Japanese and Vietnamese children make up a new exhibition in HCMC

An exhibition called "˜War and Peace Through Children's Eyes' in HCMC is attracting many children and even families

"War and Peace Through Children's Eyes", an exhibition of 49 paintings by Japanese and Vietnamese kids, is being held for two weeks at Ho Chi Minh City's famous War Remnants Museum.

The July 2-16 show is co-organized by the Japan-based Okinawa Vietnam Friendship Association and the Ho Chi Minh City-based Vietnam-Japan Friendship Association.

Organizers said the exhibition aims to help people treasure the gift of peace and alleviate the sufferings of war.

Nine paintings and one poem titled "Thank you Peace" were chosen from the winners of a painting competition in Okinawa, Japan.

The 40 Vietnamese paintings were chosen from a Vietnamese painting contest called Net ve xanh (The Green Painting).

Dang Kim Thanh, who is a member of a Haiku (short Japanese poem) club in Ho Chi Minh City, said that she was impressed by 12-grade student Shiroma Kayoko's work, which features a boy with his body divided vertically into two parts.

The right part is surrounded by a peaceful scene with flowers and blue water, while the left part is covered by blood and bombs in dark colors.

"I think that the young Japanese painters choose the gloomy imagination of war rather than blissful peace as their theme," she told Vietweek before she wrote in the event's guest book.

"Compared to the Vietnamese children's bright and innocent paintings cherishing peace, the Japanese children have depicted a more thoughtful and haunting view of war and peace."

Dinh Xuan Hao, a teacher at Ho Chi Minh City's Saigon University, said the exhibition demonstrated the strong friendship between the two nations."

"I hope that the social activity like this can cherish the love for peace and improve the global activities which uphold every nation's amity," Hao said.

After the exhibition's opening ceremony on July 2, the event also featured a scholarly seminar focusing on war and peace.

Japan invaded Vietnam during World War Two and caused a famine that claimed the lives of some two million Vietnamese.

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