SAIGON KISS: A VIETNAMESE COLLECTIVE BRIDGING CULTURE AND COMMUNITY
On December 4th, 2023, SAIGON KISS, a pioneering initiative based in the Netherlands, launched a unique Vietnamese collective. The collective consists out of three Dutch-based Vietnamese, second-generation children from refugees: Tessa Yến Nguyễn, Quang Trần and Yến-Nhi Lê. This collective marks a significant step towards uniting the Vietnamese diaspora through the creative expression of food, fashion, art, and music with the ultimate goal of community empowerment. At the intersection of tradition and innovation, this collective is set to become a hub for cultural exchange and empowerment.
Established in 2023, SAIGON KISS is a collective, created after a 3 year hiatus, as a sequel on Mãi Mãi Collective. The name was created after one of the members got into a motorbike accident during her second time visiting Sài Gòn. It left a small burn, left on the inner calf of her right leg, by locals called a ‘Saigon kiss’. The second definition of this word is: “a burn in the process of healing” which reflects the personal healing journey of the founders.
Mãi Mãi Collective was the result of a special friendship between second-generation Vietnamese-Dutch, nourished by the appreciation of Vietnamese culture. As a collective, they touched upon taboo subjects such as; healing generational trauma, growing up in the Western world and the difficulties this brings. For all of them, it was a first step towards making peace with their own identity and reclaiming their roots.
After visiting Vietnam themselves and exploring their Vietnamese-Dutch identity in modern-day Vietnam, their perspective changed completely, as they found a big community of other Vietnamese worldwide that shared the same challenges growing up as a Việt Kiều (overseas born Vietnamese). This ‘new’ country instantly felt like home. They came back different than they left: inspired by all the new, vibrant energy they felt in Vietnam, nourished by the people and connections made.
With SAIGON KISS, they want to re-establish themselves in The Netherlands and translate the energy they felt in Vietnam into meaningful projects. How are they and their community, kissed by the ever-emerging country of Vietnam? SAIGON KISS invites you to join them as they embark on this exciting journey of cultural celebration, connectivity, and empowerment.