The current paint layer is UNFINISHED, revealing a meticulous painting process

On April 6, 2022, the Cathedral – a religious work and the most famous tourist symbol of the capital was revealed with its appearance covered with deep black paint and smooth plastered traces of time. Many visitors believe that the “new shirt” of the Cathedral has lost its mossy, nostalgic appearance in the past, and replaced it with a more modern, spacious but strange and cold appearance.

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The former Cathedral is characterized by medieval Gothic architectural style, the prototype modeled after Notre Dame Cathedral, the highlight is the arches that bend towards the sky (Collectible photos)

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(Photo @giangha645)

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The latest look of Hanoi Cathedral

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The scaffolding and curtain were gradually removed, exposing the entire surface. Compared to the previous appearance, the new paint has covered a few lines on the wall, door arches ..

On the other hand, a part of public opinion believes that the Cathedral is essentially a place of religious activities, the repair – renovation to increase the life of the work, ensure safety and beauty in daily life, not to become a virtual check-in symbol that compliments – criticizes, bad – beautiful. For parishioners, completing the renovation of the Church in the Easter season has a more positive meaning.

Before the controversy, we had a conversation with Mr. NDDung – Technical and Fine Arts Supervisor for the Cathedral project to clarify the truth about the “new suit” of the 135-year-old building.

The arduous discussion process for the “new clothes” of the Cathedral with many different contractors

In the first half of 2021, the rear part of the Cathedral begins to be repaired. Public opinion was officially informed of the restoration of the work at the end of April 2021 when the scaffolding and curtain were gradually covering the front of the church. At this time, the front of the Cathedral still retains the old paint with moss and patchy stains.

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The last images of the Cathedral before the overhaul

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At the beginning of January 2022, the Cathedral had a gray paint and gradually removed all the spears and curtains (Collection photo)

About the beginning of the restoration of the Church, Mr. Dung shared: “The Cathedral is more than 135 years old, heavily penetrated into the inner fired brick layer, so the construction party had to peel off the old wall and re-plaster a new one. During the working process, the parties have many opinions such as gray paint or water paint… When public opinion comments, the construction party also tries to repaint and paint it into a fake antique form like the previous appearance. In general, the “change of clothes” for the project is necessary, although the new appearance may not be completely to the liking of the majority.

“90% of the people who are building the Cathedral are Catholics, they work in part because of the work, partly for merit. There are many construction units, my side is in charge of painting and fine arts, and the stages of scaffolding, plastering, restoration… also have their own units.” Mr. Dung said.

Dismantling the scaffolding does not mean that the painting has been completed, there will be a meticulous imitation of a painting like a painting

Since the Lunar New Year until now, almost the scaffolding and the curtain covering the front of the Cathedral have been removed, along with the paint layer changing from gray to black, many people believe that the project has completed “a new shirt”. ” and expressed a feeling of strangeness and dissatisfaction. Mr. Dung explained, a part of the public misunderstood:

“Many times the public has discussed the placement/removal of scaffolding at the Cathedral, but in fact the issue is not related. The story here is the shape of the church: wide at the bottom, narrow and pointed at the top, so at a stage, the spearmen had to take off the spear before the workers could continue to plaster/paint it (because keeping it will be entangled). People think that removing the spear is complete, but it is not, but still continues to plaster according to the 3D restoration mold, flexibly following the appropriate construction form.”

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At the end of February 2022, the Cathedral has a gray primer, the scaffolding has been removed

“I have been with the project of restoring the Cathedral since April last year, starting to paint at the end of the year. The inside is finished, the outside is still continuing to be completed. Basically, the construction unit inside and outside the Cathedral are two different units, but still use my paint. This is a new type of paint – effect paint, just introduced to Vietnam about 3-4 years ago.

In the coming days, we will continue to perfect the paint layer and add a drawing process to recreate details such as rain stains, spills, paint peeling… Restoring the appearance of the Cathedral actually has 5 stages, first primer, then black paint, then paint 2 more layers of color to recreate the “peeling” layers, finally to paint the moss stains, rain stains… The current black paint is only phase 2. It is expected that all stages will be completed before Easter this year (Sunday, April 17 – PV)”, Dung shared.

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The current deep black is the second phase of the renovation work

As such, the Cathedral is still in the process of renovation, after the black paint layer also includes many stages of color coating, meticulous drawing of antique imitation lines, to recreate the historical appearance, in a newer way. , safer, ensuring longevity and safety for the project. We hope that the parishioners and people of Hanoi and the whole country will be patient and look forward to the completed “new clothes” of the Cathedral in the next 2 weeks. 1-construction-doing-manu-vehicle-art-20220407114019536.chn

According to Gia Hien

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