Jiang is a visual artist based in London. With a background in graphic and product design, his design philosophy has always been true to sculpting a narrative. He observes the collisions between aspects of daily life, focusing on social and environmental issues. His work centers around creating digital characters, which often take strange and comedic forms. These characters are placed in virtually crafted spaces to solidify the narrative he creates to share the concepts he is portraying.
Q: WHAT WAS YOUR ROUTE TO YOUR CURRENT ARTISTIC PRACTICE?
I have always been interested in the arts since I was young, mainly drawing and painting. As I got older I began to experiment with different mediums which led me to studying product design and graphic design, which has definitely shaped the way that I currently create. During my studies I was searching for what felt the best way to express myself as an artist. This is something that I discovered when I was studying my Fashion MA at the Royal college of Art, I became aware that fashion is not only about physical garments, fashion could be about community, identity and building a better planet for tomorrow. I was intrigued by the rise of digital fashion and felt a connection with how I could use my skills from previous studies to create the kind of work I wanted to make. This led me to making work around visual activism, creating digital characters which often take strange and comedic forms and placing them in virtually crafted spaces to share topics and issues that are important to me.
Q: CAN YOU IDENTIFY ANY ELEMENTS OF YOUR COMMUNITY OR COLLABORATORS THAT HAVE HAD A STRONG INFLUENCE?
When making the work I was influenced by a number of different things, for the most part I was influenced by certain documentaries and campaigns. For example, the work of PETA, who’s ethos ‘Animal are Not Ours…’ was particularly important when focusing on the concept of animal rights. I was also heavily influenced by the documentaries ‘The Social Dilemma’ and ‘Our Planet’ when looking at this idea of awareness and how these documentaries reach a wide audience by pairing the beautiful with the truth of the devastation our planet is facing.
Q: HOW IS YOUR PROJECT TIED TO THE CIRCA X DAZED CLASS OF 20:21 THEME OF ‘COMMUNION’ ?
The work I submitted is titled Dilemmas for Earthlings which presents a digital campaign within a virtual world exploring different issues that are faced on our planet. The piece includes three layers that focus on social issues, animal rights and environmental issues. Through the use of digital characters and spaces the work acts as visual activism to offer an alternative representation of these dilemmas, proffering the hope of change whilst looking to open a conversation about how we can improve the way we all live on this planet as earthlings. The work relates to this idea of communion as it is visualising and sharing these issues that are faced on our planet. Also creating this idea of community and togetherness, which we can use to work together as earthlings to combat these issues and create a world that we can all live peacefully together.
Q: HOW WOULD THE CIRCA PRIZE OF £30,000 IMPACT YOUR FUTURE PRACTICE?
The prize would have a big impact on the future of my practice as it would allow me to further support me and allow me to develop my work and this project ‘Dilemmas For Earthlings’. It would mean being able to continue to create more work around this topic, exploring more issues that we face and sharing these to a wider audience possibly through an exhibition or immersive space. I would be able to explore further methods within the digital space in terms of creation, but also how my work can be viewed and experienced, to be used as a way to share the issues my work discusses in this alternative digital world.
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