you tell me your daily life concern, a god that I designed will be given to you to address that problem. Believe it or not, keep it or not, it’s up to you.
Human beings create gods or gods create human beings, that is a romantic question. Growing up in a society where I could be exposed to both polytheism and monotheism, I was thinking, while new gadgets and tools were invented and upgraded to enhance people’s lives, gods haven't been updated for a rather long time. To explore the possibility of creating new gods who could specifically address problems and issues in human's daily life in a contemporary context, I use the term “god design” which means utilizing design thinking in creating new gods, everything in this project begins with this concept.
The basic layer of god design is to “design” new gods that work in a modern way, they use familiar objects that we usually see in our everyday life to impose their power just like the traditional gods use their weapons, however, the scenario they use the objects is not as usual. To showcase the gods and communicate with the audience, a booth-like interactive installation and a website are developed as “god search engine”, where the audience could input their daily life concern and being returned with a certain god that relates to their input in the form of a card. The installation took the concept of small size “pop-up” shrines that usually can be found in Japan and India, it will be finished in a hi-tech product aesthetic, and the website will be visually simple and playful.
This project is not aiming at creating a new religion, it is more about looking at everyday life from another angle, focusing on the small daily problems and concerns, delivered in a more absurd and playful way, but still, with its whimsical nature, I hope it could bring positive attitudes and a delightful experience to the audience.
A web-based resource guide and participatory project with map visualization, dynamic updates, real-time database designed to inform survivors and advocates about Title IX investigations, and acknowledge their lived experiences.
“2020 US Top Colleges by Open Title IX Investigations” is one of the projects in my thesis “Beyond Case Close”, a series of projects driven by my experience filing a Title IX complaint at my undergraduate institution and at the Department of Education. In navigating the stressful process and aftermath of filing a case, I realized the limitation of procedural measures in seeking social justice and became motivated to find alternative approaches. This project is a resource guide built to inform survivors and advocates about Title IX investigations and to acknowledge lived experiences.
The website draws data from all currently open Title IX cases at the Office of Civil Rights, a sub-agency of the U.S. Department of Education that enforces civil rights laws against discrimination in educational programs. Once launched, you can see the schools currently with an open case at the OCR listed in descending order according to the number of total cases. I reference US college ranking websites and I chose to represent the schools not only with their names but also with images that I scraped searching the school name and the keyword “students”, displaying their promotional images to give a satirical overtone. I also included a Title IX timeline and featured the latest Title IX related tweets to reflect current sentiment and a write-up with diagrams about the filing process. To search for missing narratives about the lived experiences, I also created a real-time survey.
Tofu is a VR interactive installation that presents the consumption experience of convenience stores and street food in the city in a surreal way. It reflects consumers’ different relationships with food and the disappearing local marketplace culture behind this confrontation.
Tofu, an affordable ingredient with hundreds of shapes and cooking methods, is a common ingredient in China from ancient times and shows the evolvements in our eating habits. The virtual reality installation Tofu is showing these changes in a surreal way: The first chapter provides a scene of how young workers buy food in a convenience store. Players will find themselves getting off work in a city, entering a convenience store, and choosing different tofu products with appearing packages and marketing strategies. The second chapter is about the decreasing local food marketplace. The convenience store suddenly collapsed into soybeans, exposing players to a street food carnival where chili, fried tofu and other street food are wildly floating in the city. The third chapter shows how tofu is made in rural villages. The player will see villagers making the simplest tofu. In each chapter, players can grab and eat different forms of tofu, unlocking the voice narratives.
The piece is aiming to bring viewers a reflection on the changes in our consumption culture: In today's rapid urbanization, unified brands reconstruct our local life with their convenience and brand images. The market is promoting the disappearance of our neighborhood culture. City residents are enjoying the consumption of grand stories and values, but have little interest in getting to know the history of the street we live in, which is actually harmful to the diversity of our cities.
DisneylandToyFactory.com is a two-part critical art project made up of a satirical website and an ongoing 3D printing experiment. Through a repeated, cyclical process of 3D scanning and printing the same figurine of Mickey Mouse from a renowned Disney-branded Mold-A-Rama machine new, more compelling, figures are produced ,which are then advertised with satiric consumerist language on the accompanying website.
The 1960s and 70’s in the United States were the peak of popularity for a rare type of Disney vending machine called the Disneyland Toy Factory, which produced injection-molded Disney figurines on-demand at theme parks and zoos. DisneylandToyFactory.com is a satirical project in the lineage of these machines that instead allows the unpredictability of digital fabrication technology to reveal what Claudia Hart refers to as “expressiveness through imperfection”. The first part of this project is the objects themselves called “Mold-A-Rama Mickey”, a series of 3D printed replicas of an actual Toy Factory figure manipulated by a unique process of iterative 3D printing and scanning that produces sequential Mickey figures, in a way such that each is more deformed than the last. This morphing as a result of a theoretically lossless process reveals a more interesting, meaningful form as mediated by the idiosyncrasies of that process itself. The second component of DisneylandToyFactory.com is a website, serving as the contemporary replacement for the physical vending machine. The main page offers simplified and vague exaltations of “Mold-A-Rama Mickey”, claiming that, “thanks to the advancements of 3D printing” these collectibles can be printed on-demand and uniquely for every customer. The reality, however, is that each Mickey sold is actually just the latest iteration of the transformed figures from the cyclical 3D printing process. By framing this subversive concept in consumerist terms, it both offers a light jab at the emptiness of consumption as well as provides a stealthy way of bringing the resistance of this new more expressive object to more people. Finally, the artistic merit of the imperfections is further emphasized through the creation of high-quality resin versions of a selection of the figures, all glitches, and striations intact.
We all gotta get involved. As victims, participants, and spectators.
“Break the Silence” is a video installation that recreates the scenario of the seemingly harmless interactions with strangers in our life could have significant and pervasive psychological costs for women that they might not even be aware of.
That attempts to bring awareness of the concept that as a result of these seemingly harmless interactions, the sense of comfort and security of our daily life became the desperate needs for some people.
Shape of Memory is an introspective VR piece explores what shapes of memory your loved ones take and the stories that become entwined.
Shape of Memory is an introspective VR piece based around the events leading to my grandparent’s marriage. Central to this narrative is the act of dwelling, waiting, and patience in the face of the unknown – an act that has defined our lives within this global pandemic.
I chose to build out this narrative for two reasons, one as a homage to the past, and two, as a message for the future. My grandfather passed this fall and I developed a tiny ritual of holding this red jade necklace he gave me the last time I saw him. When I hold this necklace, our histories overlay, the conclusion of his illuminating my current state, what seems to be my intermission.
You start this experience by entering my room and sitting at my desk, making sure not to hit your head on the frame of my lofted bed, under which you will sit. Once seated, you turn to face the wall, the headset on a thin white desk that spans the width of the room. To your right, from the undercarriage of my bed frame, hangs the red jade necklace. You put the headset on and the room transforms into it’s virtual self, the majority of the clutter and detail absent. What does remain is the necklace. You go to pull it, both virtually and physically. As you hold onto the necklace, the wall in front of you begins to shift to the side, revealing a long hallway with cloth draped on either side. The narration begins, and you begin to glide slowly down the memory lane of my grandparent’s story, as remembered by my mother in loving detail, and virtually reconstructed and distorted by yours, truly. Although I don't ask you outright, I am curious to know what shapes of memory your loved ones take and the stories that become entwined.
While modern technology is making remote communication easier, senior people like my grandma still don't have many choices. Even learning how to use a smartphone is challenging enough for her and she still prefers to use a flip phone and she’s only doing phone calls with it. But phone calls are far from enough for our communication.
My thesis project aims to explore a more accessible way to strengthen the bonding and create better companionship for elder people like my grandma. The end goal is to create an easy-to-use product that can show my daily life visually and auditorily to my grandma.