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Photography (MA)

Jialiang Guo

Jialiang Guo is a photographer born in Hebei, China and is currently living and working in the UK. Prior to joining the Royal College of Art, Jialiang completed his BA in Photography at Falmouth University. His work addresses sociological issues and is predominately concerned with social and cultural communication, with his own experience away from home alone acting a central role to his work, utilising a variety of photographic genre from tradition documentary to more recent, digital art.

Throughout his BA and MA degree in Photography, Jialiang has completed two dissertations on Orientalism and Chinese diaspora, his latest dissertation at the Royal College of Art on ‘The Formation and Existence of Contemporary Chinese Diaspora’ has been awarded with ‘Distinction’.

For complete CV, click here

'Digital Carousel' - 2021

‘Hometown’, by definition is the town of one’s early life or one’s present fixed residence. Since my departure from China eight years ago, hometown for me is the town which I visit once or twice a year, knowing eventually I will return permanently.

Since COVID-19 started, it’s the first time that I haven't been back for two years. Although I’m not physically present at my hometown, the norm of using video calling to connect with our friends and family bestowed me with the opportunity to meet families and relatives I didn’t even knew that existed. Showing them the 30sqm of space which I’m trapped at over and over again allowed me to rethink about the relationship between myself and this space. Did it fertilise a new connection between my present space and my hometown, or is it all just illusions from my memory? Video calling is a common way for people far apart to connect with each other. Though it may be popular for long-distance social interaction, such experience of seeing through camera produced images while talking was designed in compensation for the already existed physical social interaction, and was intending to help fill the small group of social connections which cannot be reached physically, but it was never intended to be the primary way of our social interaction.  

This work is trying to address the above phenomenon. The effect of a repetitive online-only environment mixed together with our own social personality, an environment without the necessity of physical presence and body gesture are amongst the issues to reflect in my work. Through the use of digital moving image and depth scanning technology, I have 3D scanned my room everyday in the same position with the same movement, creating an online video installation in reflection of the limitations of an camera dominated social environment, and the emotional feelings people may experience towards such sudden change brought by COVID-19.


Digital Carousel (2021) - Jialiang Guo

To read the full description of this work, please refer to the statement section.

Edition of 5

Medium:

Digital Video

Size:

3840 x 2160 pixels