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'Crystal Cloud' Art Installation in Mu Cang Chai Stirs Controversy


A public art installation on Mu Cang Chai rice terraced field in Yen Bai Province recently drew attention from locals and tourists, VnExpress reports.

The installation is a structure that features a cloud-like galvanized wire mesh decorated with 58,000 crystal beads attached to several poles on the top of Mam Xoi hill, one of Mu Cang Chai most popular tourist spots.

Titled 'The Crystal Cloud - La Pan Tan,' the art installation is the brainchild of two landscape artists Andy Cao and Xavier Parrot. The execution of the project is a joint effort between the artists, local architects, the Hmong community and Yen Bai authorities. On its opening day, the "crystal cloud" attracted thousands of locals and tourists alike. 

Many have praised the exhibition for being creative and beautiful. "Whenever the sun shines, the light would reflect and disperse into seven colors of the rainbow and can be seen from hundreds of meters away, even when you're standing on nearby hills," said Nguyen Thi Huong Lien, an exhibition visitor.

Others, however, weren't very pleased. Many took to social media to express their disappointment, exclaiming that the "crystal cloud" is ugly and the installation is destroying the natural beauty of the rice terraced field.

Regarding the backlash, Le Viet Ha, one of the organizers of the exhibition guaranteed that the installation has the support of local residents and the organizers "are committed to not making any harm to the terraced rice field and keeping the landscape completely intact after the exhibition.”  

Ha also added that since rice cultivation only lasts from May to October, farmers in Mu Cang Chai are often left idle in the period between October and May. Thus, the organizer wanted to teach the farmers to do something creative so that they can make more profits off of their lands. 

The exhibition runs from May 19 to October 5.

[Photo via VnExpress]

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