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VietArt Center

Center of Vietnamese Arts and Culture in Garden Grove, CA, USA

13091 Galway Street, Garden Grove, CA 92844
714-658-6650 • Email:
Office Hours: By Appointment Only





  1. Events: Art, Culture, Charity


    1. Santa Ana, CA –VAALA - Viet Film Wave Series at Bowers Museum
    2. Carson & Artesia, CA – FAL – Children’ Reading Program
    3. Garden Grove, CA – VAC –  Exhibition: Memories of Vietnam


  1. Press Release of Interests
    1. Inside VietArt – Vietnam, The Subsidy Period
    2. OC Register & The Bolsavik  – Update: About USC Flag Decision
    3. New America Media – Commentary  – Little Saigon’s Unspeakable Problems


  1. Education

1.    CSU-Long Beach: Summer Study in Vietnam

2.    VAC – Viet Art Summer Program





Dear Friends and Family,


New Address for Viet Art Center:


We would like to announce that Viet Art Center has moved its office to St. Anselm Episcopal Church. Please mail all future correspondences to:


Viet Art Center  

 13091 Galway Street

Garden Grove, CA 92844


Thank you for coming to our Grand Opening of “Memories of Vietnam 1955-1975”.


The exhibition of the photos and the memorabilia are the vivid and heroic evidences of the sacrifice and love of the Vietnam Veterans to the people and the country of Vietnam. Some photographers lost their lives in Vietnam. Their blood was penetrated with the EARTH of beloved Vietnam; their soul was returned to HEAVEN high above; however, the images that they had captured through their own lens remain FOREVER. Until today, more than 30 or even 40 years later, their photos are exhibited together with the other photographers making  “Memories of Vietnam” to become lively and very touching.  


Thank  to OC Register and Deepa Brarath for a great feature story published on Saturday, May 3, 2008.


If you will read this articles and view the 6 featuring photos, these are the winning photos of the exhibition judging by Richard Turner (Professor of Studio Art, Art History, Co-Director, Guggenheim Gallery, Chapman University), and Jeff Brody (Professor, Communication, Journalism, California State University, Fullerton), Nick Ut (Photojournalist/Pulitzer Winner, The Associated Press).


First Place: Howard Lavick, U. S. Army, 1969-1971. Howard was interviewed in the article. Photo title: Sweet Happiness, featuring a South Vietnamese soldier and a woman. The photo expresses a sign of love and “hope” (per comment from Howard’s friend) in a time of war. The jurors unanimously selected this photo, out of more than 100, with perfect score for first place.

Second Place: Steve Curtis, U.S. Marine Corps, 1968-1970. Photo title: Too Old Too Soon. Speaking about the stop sign behind the American soldier, Steve expressed that he wanted everything to stop, the cigarettes, the war…stop the “lost innocence”.  

Third Place: John David Larson, U.S. Air Force, 1968-1972. Photo title: Playing Card, a familiar scene at the time.

Fourth Place: Two photos were selected as a tie for fourth place

 Marvin Wolf, U.S. Army, 1965-1966. Photo title: Cub Scout, Marvin is also an author of many books about the Vietnam war.

Paul Erickson, U.S. Army, 1965-1967. Photo title: Huch. While Howard is wondering where about the couple be, this little MP boy is still alive in Pleiku, Vietnam.

We will upload all the selected photos to our website soon.


Many thanks to The  Los Angeles Times, The Associated Press, North County Times (San Diego), Mercury News (San Jose), Korea Times (Los Angeles), Saigon TV (Westminster), Nguoi Viet Daily News (Westminster), Viet Weekly (Garden Grove), Garden Grove Journal, Orange County News, and many other medias for your support of our exhibition.


I respectfully send my deepest gratitude and appreciation to all exhibitors who contributed your photos to this historic exhibition.


Once again, to all the Vietnam Veterans, Welcome Home!



Peace and Love,

Michelle Phuong Thao

Executive Director, VAC  



I. Events: Art, Culture, Charity


1.    Friday May 6, 2008

Viet Film Wave Series at Bowers Museum

Symposium with Filmmakers:

Nghiem-Minh Nguyen-Vo, Stephane Gauger, and Lam Nguyen

Co-presenting by The Bowers Museum and the Vietnamese American Arts & Letters Association (VAALA) &


The Viet Film Wave series at the Bowers Museum will culminate in a symposium with Filmmakers Nghiem-Minh Nguyen-Vo (director of Buffalo Boy), Stephane Gauger (director of Owl and the Sparrow) and Lam Nguyen (producer of Journey from the Fall).  The event will take place on Friday May 6, 2008 from 7:30-9:30 p.m. in the gorgeous Norma Kershaw Auditorium at Bowers Museum , 2002 N. Main St, Santa Ana , CA 92706 , Telephone: (714) 567-3695.  The museum will host a reception from 7:30-8:00 p.m.   Admission fee (including the reception): $5.  Tickets will be available at the door.   

Panelists’ Bios

Nghiem-Minh Nguyen-Vo - Writer/Director

Nguyen-Vo grew up in a small town in Vietnam during the war.  To escape the fighting and atrocities, he spent a great deal of his youth in the only one-room movie theater in town that was managed by his parents.  Except when there was fighting, he was able to watch at least one film every week from around the world. 

After high school, he was awarded a scholarship to Université de Poitiers, France .  He continued his education in the United States at UCLA and graduated with a Ph.D. in applied physics.   Now living in the globalized Los Angeles and returning to Vietnam regularly, he is trying to transcend the differences in these two worlds.

“Buffalo Boy” is Nguyen-Vo’s first feature.  It has received many awards around the world.

Stephane Gauger - Writer/Director

Born in Saigon and raised in Orange County , Calif. , Gauger received a bachelors degree in theatre and French literature. He subsequently worked in the camera and lighting departments on independent films in the United States and Southeast Asia , including Sundance winner Three Seasons, all the while honing his writing and directing craft on short narrative and documentary films.  Owl and the Sparrow, his feature debut, received nine awards at film festivals in 2007, including the audience award at the Los Angeles Film Festival and best narrative feature at the Asian Film Festivals of San Francisco, San Diego and Dallas . Gauger was nominated for Breakthrough director at New York ’s Gotham awards as well as the John Cassavetes awards at the Independent Spirit Awards.  He is now in post-production on Vietnam Overtures, a documentary on Vietnam ’s classical music scene.


Lam Nguyen - Producer

Lam Nguyen was born in Vinh Long, Vietnam where he grew up until his family moved to the United States in 1989. In 1996, he won the Student Emmy Award and the Chicago International Award for his short film Nostalgic. One of the founders of NonLa Films, Nguyen has directed over 40 music videos and produced for Van Son Entertainment since 1996. In 1999, he joined the Club O' Noodles Theatre Group, where he met Ham Tran and produced Ham's M.F.A thesis film The Anniversary, which has won over 25 international awards, in addition to being on the top 10 list for the 2004 Academy Awards®.

Nguyen said, "It's important for me to make Journey from the Fall because the new generation of Vietnamese youth must remember where they came from and why. Journey is a historical film that needs to be told to the world."

2.  Children’s Reading Program --- May 31 in Carson & June 7 in Artesia

 Co-organized and sponsored by Filipino American Library (FAL) and the County of Los Angeles Public Library


Saturday, May 31 at Carson Regional Library ( 151 E. Carson St. )

Saturday, June 7 at Artesia Library ( 18722 S. Clarkdale Ave. ) 

They will both be held from 2:00pm-4:00pm and are recommended for children ages 5-10.  To RSVP for these free events, please contact or 213-382-0488.


The FAL Children’s Reading Program promotes the value of diversity to children in Greater Los Angeles through the reading of Filipino children’s books.  The May 31 event in Carson will feature the Filipino folktale The Monkey and the Turtle and the June 7 event in Artesia will highlight the theme of “handing down through generations.”  Admission is free and donations are accepted.  Snacks and drinks will be provided.  The program is coordinated by Celeste B. Diaz, the FAL Children’s Librarian, and funded by grants from Wal-Mart and Citigroup Foundation.


Contact Information: JONATHAN LORENZO Tel: 213-382-0488



3. Exhibition Opening: Memories of Vietnam 1955-1975

 Organized by Viet Art Center

Sponsored by St. Anselm of Canterbury Episcopal Church


Location: St. Anselm of Cantebury Episcopal Church

13091 Galway Street

Garden Grove, CA 92844

Exhibition Period: May 3 – July 5

Time: 10am-5pm (Closed Monday and Sunday)




 II.        Press Release of Interests


1.  Inside VietArt – Vietnam, The Subsidy Period


At the Grand Opening of “Memories of Vietnam”, a Vietnam Veteran asked why I fled Vietnam on a small boat, I told him briefly about our life in Vietnam after 1975 under the communist regime.  You can read my article “Life in Vietnam Under the Subsidy Economy: 1975-1986 A Time To Forget, A Life To Remember” published in Inside VietArt, November 2007 (in two versions: English and Vietnamese).


You also find in this issue an article by Khanh Van Tran about the Exodus of April 1975, “The USS Midway, My Dear Friend”


2. OC Register & The Bolsavik  – Update: About USC Flag Decision


Many of you have asked me update about the USC Flag situation.


Here’s the official answer from USC officials:


The Bolsavik has an interesting article about this issue as well:


Dr. Vinh Xuan Nguyen and the Coalition Against Resolution 36 are very familiar to me. They signed the press release to invite everyone et all Vietnamese-Americans to demonstrate at our recent concert “The Precarious Flower” which we held in memory of the late songwriter Trinh Cong Son. The demonstrators were less than 100; the concertgoers were more than 1000.


Vietnam War, a never ending conflict!  However, I believe this conflict shall pass.


3. New America Media – Commentary  – Little Saigon’s Unspeakable Problems


Thanks to The Bolsavik, I read this commentary from his friend, Ky-Phong Tran. I had to say that I laugh to …”tears” with his “unspeakable” sense of humor.

By the way, there seems to be some kind of “love in the air” between The Bolsavik and Ky-Phong Tran. Check out these comments:






June 23-August 1, 2008

Center for International Education & Department of Asian and Asian American Studies

California State University, Long Beach in collaboration with the VNA University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Hanoi and Saigon (HCMC)

The objectives of the Summer Study Abroad Program in Vietnam are: (1) to provide CSULB students with affordable opportunities for international education; and (2) to enable participants to substantially improve their Vietnamese proficiency by being immersed in the Vietnamese language and culture for three weeks at the VNU University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Hanoi and Saigon (HCMC).

Scholarship funded by CSULB is available to students

All college students are qualified to apply

Application deadline: May 10, 2008

UPDATE: This summer class will be taught and led to Vietnam by Professor Chuc Bui, aka Quyen Di (UCLA/CSULB). Professor Quyen Di  is also President of Viet Art Center Foundation. Currently, this summer class has only two (2) slots left – maximum 20 students. After the scholarship, the total cost, including airfare, hotel, and others, is $1700.

For more details regarding available scholarship and application, please contact the CSULB - Department of Asian and Asian American Studies (FO3-340; 562-985-4645).


Six week all-day summer camp: July 7-August 16

Location: St. Anselm of Cantebury Episcopal Church

13091 Galway Street

Garden Grove, CA 92844


Grade: 1-6

Time: 8:30am-6:30pm


Creative Writing, English, Math, Art, Drawing, Music, Sport

More details coming soon –

Please contact or 858-414-5724 for registration and program brochure.

ABOUT VIET ART CENTER FOUNDATION                                                               


The Viet Art Center Foundation was formed as a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit community art center supporting the contemporary artists working in all forms of cultural arts.


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