Look up look carefully
Water towers – “châteaux d’eau” in French – form an
imposing feature in many towns and cities across
Vietnam with an alien architectural presence attracting
attention with size and shape. Each tower tells its own
story: about their builders and about the rise, fall and
change in societies and régimes of the country.
The water tower is an analogue of the hero, serving
only the régime which constructs it and failing to
transpose its function and strength to new rulers,
despite its structure remaining sound. However, unlike
clear symbols of political power, the water tower
remains relatively immune from the explicit attempts of
rulers to exert their influence.