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Graphic Design

Chi Zhang

Chi Zhang is a graphic designer and illustrator based in Beijing. Her practice focuses on the subjects and people around her, such as a certain time, a certain experience or a place. She tries to resonate with many by telling the story through printed matter, digital platforms, and interactive formats.


Education:

2016-2019, Graphic and Media Design, London College of Communication, BA

2019-2021, Visual Communication, Royal College of Art, MA


 Exhibitions:

2020, ABC Exhibition: Art books in China, Beijing

2019, Arts Materials Lab,Taiwan

2016, The artworks about The Forbidden City, China World Mall Center, Beijing

Degree Details

School of Communication

Graphic Design

This is a research into the place in between objects and memories, narrate the different dimensions of memory using video, sound and space, try to bring people’s attention of noticing their valuable memories evoked by daily objects. Inviting audiences to my childhood memories, but also to resonate with their nostalgia environment.

Under the Dust Cloth-cover — Under The Dust Cloth is a collection of objects containing memories that are valued by people, each marked carefully with when they were found and locations. These seem normal and dated, but people could read the texture of usage from these images, the temperature of emotions, and the dimension of time and space.
Introduction — The story goes back to the time when I returned to China for quarantine, I lived in an old house of my family where I haven’t back to after primary school,My childhood and family memories are vaguely recorded by those old objects in the room. Under the situation of home isolation, I became curious about this place beyond just living satisfaction and tried to re-examine the room and the items from an objective and unfamiliar perspective.
Dust Cloths in the Kitchen
Objects found
Objects found
Objects found
Dust cloth in the kitchen
Objects found

Under the Dust Cloths is a catalogue recording every items found underneath the dust cloths. although they lack a functional value, the dust cloths is a symbol for what lies underneath – objects chosen to beprotected by my grandparents. 

As Sherry Turkle said, we find it familiar to consider objects as useful or aesthetic, as necessities or vain indulgences. We are on less familiar ground when we consider objects as companions to our emotional lives or as provocations for thought. I want to underline the inseparable connection between thought and memory in relation to objects. 


Size:

420mm x 297mm 120pages
Research 04 — In this connection I want to try to record memories and emotions that cannot be preserved and have no physical form, and to imitate the process of memory in a visual way: the nature of loss and the reality that many things we won’t see again, the possessions remain in our memories and now in a vague often mismatched representation to explore.
Objects from childhood memories-tin frog — According to Sutton’s theory of why objects recall memory, I chose four representative items of my childhood age that people are easier to resonate with.
tin frog
tin frog
artificial flower
artificial flower
artificial flower-project video view — The rationale of my video editing originate from Husserl's conclusion of "Internal Time Phenomenology", that memory and imagination are images of each other, and they are mutually implicated. Imagination cannot fully explain how our memories of the past are possible. the materials used in the video have related associations caused by the objects. They are derived from the materials of life experience.
Objects found in childhood memories- enamel teacup — The videos are relatively free to break the linear time narrative, but at the same time, they are objectively extracted from the product of that era in terms of visual language, reflecting the sense of age, and returning to the scene Lifestyle status. At the same time, through the sound effects and the sense of age, this cross-dimension line.
enamel teacup
enamel teacup
enamel teacup
Objects found in childhood memories- letters — The feeling of seeing written words is almost like meeting in person. When you read the letter written by this person, the person seems to appear in front of you. When you see an item related to what he/she has written, it triggers a specific form of remembering and making connections.
letters — The form of projecting videos on object is both a intuitional method of human projecting their own cognition, emotions and memories to certain objects, but also aims to reflect the untouchable and intangible of memory, no matter how hard you tried, you can never really touch the same object from the past, trying to illustrate the nature of loss and the reality that many things we won’t see again, the possessions remain in our memories and now in a vague often mismatched representation.
letters — Also memory is untouchable, the process of the viewer's contact with the object also breaks the integrity of the projection

We are afraid of losing our memories, because our memories define who we are. 

When objects are lost, it’s not that memories are lost forever. What you lose is opportunities for spontaneous reminiscence: those times when you catch a keepsake in view and suddenly a memory floods your mind. Physical objects can be so valuable because they “carry part of the past with them.”

In the Post-pandemic contexts, many of things we miss are unable for us to revisit, we all have the nostalgia feeling, a general feeling of the deep detachment from certain experiences that we are familiar with. For me, these daily necessities that are placed at home but are no longer used fascinate me because they are close partners in my childhood daily life, a connection that can provide solace. These old objects carry the dimension of time – identity, personal experience, demonstrating the relationship between objects and emotion.

memo-folding
memo-folding — To mimic the nature of memory, tracking the traces left by artificial objects about to disappear. No matter how long the traces remained, how hard we tried our best to remember things, there are still many details that cannot be remembered, and we can’t control what we can remember and how long we can remember it.
spread 3
page1
page7

The recognition of memory through objects.

This common experience, the feeling of fragile memory, and their fragmented attributes – captured through photography.

Medium:

paper

Size:

297mmx200mm 10pages