‘Sisters’ is a large 2011 lacquer on wood with gold leaf accents painting created by Vietnamese artist Dinh Quan, also known as the Master of lacquer. Featuring a red, gold and black palette, the painting reveals the close ties the artist has with tradition, interlaced with a contemporary research. Depicted on a dark background, subtly shifting from black at the top to red at the bottom, two young women, the “sisters” are facing us. The golden umbrella behind them creates a delicate halo that highlights their ghost-like appearance. The woman dressed in red is holding a golden flower, whose sinuous lines accentuates their elongated silhouettes beautifully. The use of lacquer shows Quan’s close connection to the past. While lacquer was first introduced by the Chinese, traces of this exquisite resin were found in ancient tombs from the 4th century BC. Quan however, uses lacquer to express his emotions in the most direct way. His subjects are women, depicted in a surrealist manner. This painting presents no less than 10 layers of lacquer, which allows the reflection of light to create a stunning intensity of colors. Unframed, this lacquer on wood painting is signed lower left.