Part One

Contextual Practice

14/10/2019 "Place" Reflection

What ideas/concerns are you exploring in the project?

What materials are you using?

What do you need for tomorrow?

30/09/2019 “Place" Reflection

The "Place" project was started by recording a remembered place through drawing and writing. First I did a mind map to list some remembered place, and I chose my childhood bedroom. The bedroom is very normal and I can't quite remember it because I only lived in that house before 6 years old, but I remembered the bed very well because I always had nightmares: lots of fancy coloured lines and geometries are moving around very fast, and shapes are squeezing and squashing. They're very strange and abstract dreams, but I remember feeling very nervous and afraid, so I would call my mom and she'll lie down next to me and comfort me. So somehow because of these nightmares, the bedroom and bed became the most remembered place.

For recording, I did a map of the bedroom, some sketches to show the content of my nightmare. However, the house is now being distorted and I can't revisit the place again, which may cause a lack of primary research

When visiting the exhibition space in Kings Cross Street Space, I found the space is very big, especially the corridor, space and wall may cause echo. Since the exhibition space is quite big, I'm thinking about creating an installation piece.    

26/09/2019 "The Sonic Witness"(4D) Reflection

How has your relationship with sound changed during the creation of your outcomes? has this revelled more about your understanding of sounds ability to reveal the new about the world around you? or does sound constantly undermining our relationship with the real via abstraction of it?

what happens to sound once it is recorded?

It allows the audience to look back and listen to the sound as many times as they want, sine sound itself is very fragile and passes really fast. Also, there are no two same pieces of sound in the world, so every recorded sound is very valuable both for science and art. Once it is recorded, it becomes a piece of evidence, a kind of proving to show to the audiences.

How did the use of your smartphone influence the way in which you approached sound recording? was it more problematic as a medium, or did it make it more personal because of your relationship to your smartphone?

Use my smartphone really makes sound recording more personal, because nowadays, the smartphone is a really personal belong, very easy to carry and I'll carry it all the time, so it becomes very convenient to record the sounds at any time I wish. Sometimes if I want to record something secretly, my smartphone helped a lot. Although it is not the most professional medium and way to record sounds, so it may affect the quality of the sound.

18/09/2019 Contextual Practice

Contextual Practice Task: How to be invisible 

Rationale: In London and in big cities in general, it is easy to put up a facade and make our true selves invisible. With our project, we are going to try to show this aspect of everyday life.  Why do we change our manner and habit when we are in public? Isn't doing this just like placing a mask over our true selves? In a way, it's some sort of invisibility cloak. Being different is dangerous, it points you out from the multitude. Everyone has different ideas and habits, so we water down ourselves to be normal and not disturb any other people around us. But isn't this just like lying? Our true form is our weird side, our peculiar side and in a way, it is the deepest form of truth we can embrace as people. We are going to show this in our project to be able to show how interesting and beautiful it is to be yourself. We want to represent how we chose to hide our interior self in certain moments and let it out in other, specifically when we are in private

16/09/2019 "Altered Spaces" Reflection

"Altered Spaces" Project

Today we finished "Altered Spaces" project. After lots of experiments and give-ups, I created this piece. The subject matter in my work is tension. I chose lots of city images from my phone, then narrowed my frame to choose small parts. I used repetition in collaging to represent that in the city everything is so crowded and stressful. The used of sewing and string is very successful, which gives the piece of paper a sense of tension. The tension force makes the flat paper become three-dimensional which I think is quite interesting. The creation fo focal point using lines was inspired by my research artist, David Schnell. Also today the way of presentation is very good. The use of nail makes this image coming out of the frame and spreading out on the wall. 

During the critique, I got lots of advice on further developing ideas. Although for today's presentation, my critique mates and I were quite pleased with the size of my work, I'm interested in enlarging the size of this work, maybe fill up a wall. Extend the string in the whole room, or up to the ceiling. I want to create a big installation to let my audience bein involved. If I do so, my audience can touch the images and string, feel the tension of the string,  which makes this piece becomes an interacting artwork


12/10/2019 "Perform For the Camera" (4D)

Is there a specific point at which action becomes art?

i think there's no specific point. Since art involves both artist and audience, sometimes it's the audiences who decide whether this action becomes art or not. Every day we are doing actions, maybe the same actions every day, maybe different sometimes, in some kind of way, these actions are all performances, we are performing ourselves to the public world. 

How can we move freely in our bodies and across borders, art colleges and across the cosmos?


How and when is photography a performance?

(read the performativity of performance documentation)

10/09/2019 "Altered Spaces" Reflection

 "Altered Spaces" Project

What are the most significant decisions you've made today? Why?

Today I decided to develop one of my collage. I tried painting on different surfaces: 

1. Painting on flat cardboard

2. Painting on scratched cardboard. I found this method very interesting, scratched cardboard can make two layers of paints, which separates yellow and blue, also I used the tissue to rip off some paint on the surface and create the blank pattern. The surface became rough

3. Painting on paper and using tissue as a material to create texture, which created slight scratching patterns.

What do you need to develop to resolve project on Monday?

I want to continue on creating different texture and pattern, and try to combine painting and collage.

However I'm not quite plesed with today's experiment, it didn't quite explain the theme "altered spaces", and I haven't decide my basic concept yet. I really need to catch up duirng the weekend. 

04/09/2019 Contextual Practice

Contextual Practice: Haptic/Optic Looking 

Optic: of or relating to the eye or sight. the eye. a lens of an optical instrument. The optical gaze suggests distance and perspective in order to survey and categorize.

Haptic: of or relating to the sense of touch. The haptic looking suggests an intimate and caressing gaze that brings the subject in close proximity with the object.


02/09/2019 "Collection" Reflection

Today we had a brief introduction of this foundation course, also the schedule for the next couple of weeks. The course goes on really fast, we need to start, progress and finish the projects within a really short time, which I guess it's a bit challenging. 

The first project is 'Collection'. We went outside and found different objects which somehow related to each other. I looked at 'Black Holes' on the streets. (They may be from tubes, water pipes or vents.) I'm interested in these kinds of things which people will normally ignore, or too busy to notice. I took lots of photos at this first stage, I'm thinking about developing these photos into a video work or make an installation

I found everyone seems confused on the first day but the collecting process was quite interesting. It allows me to look at this world carefully, to discover things which I normally ignored. 

15/10/2019 "Place" Reflection

07/10/2019 F&T Workshop Introduction



Today I had the fashion and textile workshop introduction, learnt how to use the sewing machine and knitting machine. I found sewing and knitting is very time consuming, and I'm not sure if making a quilt is a good idea or not. Maybe I 'll need to reconsider my outcome.

03/10/2019 "Place" Reflection

Consider your relationship to your chosen place, how can you advance your understanding of this site through the use of alternative methods and mediums? Installation, performance, projection, sculpture, text, etc.

During the lecture, the teacher introduced to us how transportation itself can become a piece of artwork, which I never thought it before. Since my artwork, the quilt is very easy to carry, and I'll pass a lot of places during transportation, I'm thinking about documenting the whole transportation process using photography and video. From my bed to the street, to the underground and finally arrive at the college, these are all the places where people can fall in sleep. So it may turn to be a performance artwork.

Consider ways in which you can reveal/deny an interpretation of your chosen place.

My initial chosen place was my childhood bedroom and my childhood nightmare, then I developed my idea to a much bigger bedroom: "the place where people can fall in sleep". I think it is a better way to represent my original idea.

How was the group discusses what was said and is there any ideas that you would like to take forward?

The group discussion helped me a lot on improving my workflow page and sketchbook. My mate, Alicia, did a really good job for her workflow. I learned from her that the writing should be more specific, as I should talk more about my personal thoughts and responses for the research artwork, in order to help me clarify which specific element I am studying for my own art practice. Her sketchbook is also very impressive because she already started the second one. I noticed she will document all her thoughts and sketches on her sketchbook. I often see a full page of mind maps or sketches using different materials. For me, I was used to thinking a lot and making decisions in my mind, instead of writing them down on the paper, so I found my problem is I'm thinking too much and afraid of getting started to create things. I should really improve and make good use of my workflow and sketchbook. 

When discussing the "Place" project, Alicia gave me some advice about how my pattern looks like a part of details when looking very closely to an object, also looks like cells, which is quite interesting since I never thought it in this way. 

01/10/2019 "Place" Reflection

Which of your ideas is the most interesting and why?

Now I'm thinking about creating an installation piece since the exhibition space is quite big. My initial idea was my childhood bedroom, after developing, I'm now focusing on "the places that people can fall in sleep", for example on the street, on the chair, on the sofa, on the grass and etc. My next element is my childhood nightmare, which is just very random and fast-moving colour shapes. I'm thinking about creating a quilt or something wearable using the pattern, then document myself carrying this special quilt to the bed: street, chair, sofa, grass and etc. I'll document my action using photography or video, then displace these documents and the quilt in Kings Cross, since the classroom is another place that people can fall in sleep. 

How can you begin to test out and experiment with your idea-first action?

First I booked a fashion and textile workshop next Monday, then I'll start making small samples to see the time needed and material needed. Even though making a quilt involves mostly sewing and knitting, I want to try adding different materials into my quilt. Because I want my audience to touch and maybe put on my quilt, and I want them to feel this special nightmare quilt. I'll discuss with the technician and teacher to see if this idea is workable after my experiment. 

What ways of working/experiments feel most appropriate?

I'll design the pattern on the quilt first, then make the quilt as quick as I can. I'll make small pieces first then combine them together later since a quilt is quite big to make. If the time is really limited, I'll make a pillow or blanket instead.  Then I'll carry this artwork to visit different places, where I found people will fall in sleep, for example in the underground, then document my sleeping action through photography or video. 

What materials and resources do you need to bring on Thursday?

Since I haven't done the workshop introduction, I'll start designing the pattern used on the quilt, and other materials I want to add to the quilt, to reinforce my audiences' feeling when they touch it.  

25/09/2019 Contextual Practice

Contextual Practice: Proximity, Context, Meaning




19/09/2019 "The Self"(4D) Reflection

How do we represent or present ourselves?

I chose my student ID card as a representation of myself, as it contains lots of information: name, photo, school. It is also a piece of evidence: to prove that I have attended the class, to enter the door, to print. Sometimes I don't want to wear my ID card in public because I don't want to show my name to a stranger.

How does it tell about our identity, ethnicity, gender and social expectations?

In these series of photographs I created, it seems like I was holding my ID card and showing it on the street to the public, but actually, I was showing the back and hiding the real photo towards my self. However, while presenting my photos, all the information on my ID card was shown to my audience from a first-person perspective. I want to use this contradiction to show that in this society, we have no place to hide our privates

17/09/2019 "Material News" Reflection

Today we started the sculpture project with finding interesting news or images on newspaper. I read an article called "Pressed for Space", which talks about two satellites were almost collide together because space is getting crowded. A big crash may threaten entire orbits and cause chain reactions. I thought the idea of crashes in space is very interesting since the earth is also getting crowded because of the rapid growth of population. Also, the article mentions space need traffic control just like the traffic rules on the earth. 

Then I saw the Births, Marriages and Deaths part on newspaper which also got my interest, because in China, we don't have this part of reports on a  newspaper. Reading through these names remains me an image of a human relationship network. I may combine this idea of relationship network with the idea of crashes in space.

11/09/2019 Contextual Practice

Contextual Practice: Language and Text as Material


This is the piece of text I got during the class, and we were supposed to cut out words and phrases I find interesting and create a new text. When I was reading this text for the first time, it's hard for me to really understand it since English is my second language. I can't quite understand a sentence if one or two important words were out of my knowledge. So my process of reading is like "blank out" the unfamiliar words. The idea of blank out words is inspired by artist Ed Ruscha. Through the action of blank out, the meaning of the text is totally changed. 

This remains me the process of studying English since I was in primary school. The teacher always taught the students the key step while doing English reading: find, circle or underline the verbs, nouns and subjects, in order to understand the structure of a text. So I did the same thing to this text after my "blank out" action, but now this method of reading the text seems funny and useless.

Further developing ideas:

1. Find a dictionary, blank out the unknown words and turn it into my personal dictionary, which means I am the only one who can and is suitable to use this dictionary. 

09/09/2019 "Altered Spaces" Reflection

"Altered Spaces" Project

What methods/materials/process did I use today?

The project started by making collages. I did two collages in my sketchbook using the photograph I prepared earlier, they are mostly architecture pictures, so I was playing with spaces by cutting and rotating pictures of the building. Then I added some drawings and sketchings on the top of the collage. I found the process of collaging very interesting, even though this is a painting project. It allows me to try out different compositions and combinations. 

How effective were these? Which sketch/plan do I want to develop tomorrow?

The first collage is a random experiment with different architectures from a different culture. I was trying to show culture diversity through modern buildings from London and historical architectures from China. The second collage is focused on the idea of "perspective lines". I chose photos that contain buildings or parts of buildings. After collage, I found the geometric shape very interesting, so I extended their perspective line and tried to create a focal point. 

I prefer the second collage more than the first one, because, after the first experiment, I found a kind of rule or method to organize my pictures.  

 What material will you need-surfaces? paint?

I think I'll make a collage with painting on the top, so I'll try collage on different surfaces.


05/09/2019 “Collection” Project Reflection

This is the very first project in the foundation year. I've got a really good experience which is different from all the other project I did before. The project ended up with a presentation and critique. From the critique, I gained lots of ideas and advice from my group mates, which gives me many different directions and ideas to push my "collection" project further. 

Further development ideas:

1. Create installation on a big scale using fabric. The idea is to enlarge the microworld and show all the details to my audience. My photography shows a sense of depth, which attracts the audience to go through it, into these artificial caves.

2. Film a piece of video of how my big hand is slowly going through or going down my clothes, interacting with the microworld.

3. Combine with mirror, insects, microphotography and other elements.

03/09/2019 "Collection" Reflection

After the first day of class, I went home and tried to experiment with my photos. I looked into my closet and found the holes on my clothes are more interesting. My collection is the inner structure or inner space of my clothes. I took pictures from the neckband of my top or looking inside my shoes.  I arranged my collection into a different category of clothes from top to toes. I have hats, top, pants, socks, and shoes. The inner structures of clothes are often more complex than the outer surface. The clothes and outfits are all men-made objects, they are artificial landscapes. Also, the pieces were been cut, sewed and folded to make up the beautiful outfits which indicate that people won't normally notice the inside content or backstage details of beautiful outcomes.