25 Pieces of Romanticism, the Inspiration of Desperation Archive, Nov 2016.

The last project of the first semester of level 6.

It symbolised the idea of old-school/classical style has occupied a considerable part of my work. Sometimes I felt exhausted trying to produce ‘contemporary style’ works. I was aware of the fact that classical style may not be popular as contemporary art. But giving up the idea I love just for pursuing additional appreciation, what kind of artist will I become?

Therefore 25 pieces oil painting with bright and vivid colour, and based on the idea of romanticism has been produced. Above that, a theory called ‘Desperation Archive’ was generated as well.

25 Pieces of Romanticism
Oil on canvas, 7 cm * 7 cm * 25 pieces, Nov 2016

The idea first come to my mind is when I realised I will be back home in less than one year. Not like Chinese students that always felt homesick and cannot blend-in, I was actually anxious of going home. The society developed rapidly and lifestyles has been changing rapidly since I left in 2013. For example everyone’s paying things via their phones, physical letters disappeared and etc, I cannot get used to these facts even in 2018. The other reason is that a considerable long period of blending-in and producing landscape paintings did created a connection between me and England. I realised that fact that Chinese passport require a visa to go, basically anywhere, and for applying a visa a significant amount conditions have to be meet. Combining with pressures from the traditional social value ‘you need to start working hard, saving money to purchase an apartment for marriage’ currently flourished in China, I believed that chance of seeing such views can be very low in the future.

Desperation Archive is a rush of reproducing landscapes and daily scenarios that strongly-bounded with me via emotions. Originally, the intention was to store them properly in forms of different kinds of paintings before the chance of seeing such scenes became vague. It could be considered that ALL WORKS that produced before Oct 2017, if they are not contemporary style or designed for reflect social phenomenon, they are certainly a part of the Desperation Archive.

Some process images I found in a long lost portable hard disk


On the presentation day the project was carried to the campus installed within an A3 portfolio. I have considering how I would like it looked like, so I tried to find inspiration by imaging objects with equal value/conceptual value/personal position. I imagined I carried a container, maybe a case; I believe what within the case was something priceless; and to present it I have to open up the case, and rotate it to the correct angle to show audiences. Therefore, the act to display could be kept, it is like, please do not have fun at my ignorant here, showing a case of priceless jewel at a deal of two mafias. What I should do to show these jewels comprehensively as quickly as possible, so that the other dealer would not shoot me due to run out of patience (believe me a presentation of art project could be way more crueler)? So perhaps I need to spread the composition, and simplify the step of showing these tiny pieces. So I have calculated the length, it turned out the plan was possible; then I went to Sainsbury for some glue, and filled little crevices that glue failed to fill with oil paint to make the whole display more like a whole object; everything was happy and fine, safe and sound.

And that, was a thinking pattern I often use. The exchange of equal value.

Formal Description

‘The project was an assignment of the Illustration course. Students were asked to choose a word ends with ism and respond to conceptual brief in an explorative and personal manner as well as create strong communications with identified audiences.

Considering the fact that studying in the UK has taken the best of my years, the project has demonstrated a desperate eagerness of documenting daily natural scenarios outside the accommodation. The strong emotional bond with England which reflected in the enthusiasm and fondness of its landscapes has been expressed with individual understanding. The series focused on creating specimen-like portable memories of a specific site. It has been considered as a major success of outcomes of the semester.

The concept of Desperation Archive has been established through the research process of the project. The concept mainly focuses on expressing the nostalgic feeling caused by aposteriori experiences. It has frequently been reflecting in subsequent projects as discussions of liberalism against physical restraints caused by force majeure. ‘