First painting exhibition by autistic child opens in Hanoi

Thanh Nien News

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An exhibition of 60 paintings by a nine-year-old autistic boy opened in Hanoi on Thursday, aiming to bring people closer to the world of autistic children, Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reported.
Themed “Nem’s story”, the week-long exhibition at the KAI Art Center at No.342 Nghi Tam, Tay Ho District is the first of its kind in Vietnam, 
The little artist, who is born Ha Dinh Chi but better known as Nem, was diagnosed with autism when he was one year old, according to the report.
His parents, an architect and a university lecturer, have since learned to approach and interact with him by joining a club of parents of autistic children in Hanoi.
A third-grader now, Nem can write and do basic calculations, while painting is his hobby.
Official detailed figures of autism are not available in Vietnam, but statistics from major hospitals showed that the number of autistic children has increased in recent years.
The National Hospital of Pediatrics in Hanoi reported that it received 1,752 autistic children as of 2009, compared to 963 cases the previous year.

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