Li Zheng | “Distance” | Bochao Wang | “Behind the Harmony”
Li is an interactive artist who creates many interactive installations, applications and web arts. She grew up in China, finished her undergraduate school in Osaka Japan and is currently a graduate student in New York, US. Because of herself’s experience, many of her projects are related to long-distance communication and mixed language. She pays extra attention on the balance of function and aesthetics and welcomes her audience to participate her works.
“Distance is a set of wearable interactive installation. 5 hood like projects will move based on distance between the person or mannequin who wears it and any other people. Once a person appears in front of these hoods, they will immediately close and cover its owner’s face. It is an exaggerated expression to address that a person like me who meets a stranger will feel nervous and desire to hide his or her exposed body parts such as face in order to achieve a sense of security. However all hoods still have their own personalities. According to different behaviors of audience, they will gradually cover mannequins’ head in different speed and movement patterns.”
“Behind the Harmony is an installation of an indoor scene to express my dissatisfaction with some safety decision is of Chinese government which reflect in aspects of individual censorship and information control. The installation shows a corner of my room in my imagination, where walls, floor and furniture are covered over with patterns that indicate conflicts between information control and my struggle for freedom of speech.
The word “harmony” refers to a concept named Socialist Harmonious Society in China, which is a socio-economic vision that is said to be the result of Chinese leader Hu Jintao’s signature ideology of the Scientific Development Concept. The concept was a response to the problem of social inequality/wealth gap, which if not dealt immediately, could lead to social unrest and even turmoil.
The word “river crab” sounds similar to the word “harmonious” in Mandarin Chinese and it has been adopted as internet slang in Mainland China in reference to internet censorship.”