Tho Ha village communal house – a masterpiece of Vietnamese traditional architecture

With architectural art bearing the architectural style of the 16th century, the scale and surface of the work also show the relatively high level of construction of the communal house by the workers in the past, bringing unique architectural values. At the same time, the sculptural decorations in Tho Ha communal house are really works of art.

In the whole Tho Ha communal house from the perspective of architecture and decorative arts, only the Great Hall is remarkable. In the Great Hall, the art of decoration and sculpture shows its unique features through a variety of themes with images of dragons, phoenixes, unicorns, animals, flowers, clouds, fairies. The decoration is generally characterized by strong lines, with high embossed blocks, with a contrast between floating and sinking due to the virtuosity of the carving techniques of the ancient artisans.

At Tho Ha communal house, in addition to the decorations on the architectural department, there are other sculptures. It is a set of hammock doors in the middle space in front of the temple. The set of hammock doors made in the 1692 were painted gilded, chiseled and carved very elaborately. The main part of the hammock door is the three shrines. The altar is made in the style of 8 interlocking layers, the outer surface has a lotus-shaped ledge and 6 small columns carved with dragons. The decorations on the hammock doors of Tho Ha communal houseare mainly in the artistic style of the Le Dynasty (17th century) but there are also some parts with the artistic style of the Nguyen Dynasty.

With a layout that follows the traditional rule – the law of symmetry. However, the carvings are cleverly shown, the lines are more beautiful and vivid than the previous period. Along with the technical layout of carving, it also contributes significantly to the success of Tho Ha communal house decoration art. This is really considered the pinnacle of the 17th century communal house decoration art.

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