Final Project IS2 – Visual Culture

Week Apr 22 — Apr 28

My theme is identity. I am interested in exploring the relationship between digital identity. To be more specific, I focus on the virtuality of the digitized identity that it is made of abstract data and it is flat with no physical form. I have been exploring projecting images onto human bodies. It is relevant because projected images are flat and made of lights, and they bend and deform when they fall on the human body. I think projected images can be a good metaphor for virtual identity.

What I learned from the critique is that there is no strong connection between my photographs and social media. I could make it into a video to show the action of swiping and scrolling online content.

Since last week I have been researching creating images with different photography techniques. The artists I researched are Haley Bueschlen, Hannah GottschalkLászló Moholy-NagyViviane SassenShape of Light.

For the next class, I am going to research artists and work that use video as a format, and use light and shadow, and have interaction with the audience.

  1. For the next class, I plan on checking out a projector kit. 30 min
  2. I will do some shooting for the content that will be projected. 1 hour
  3. I will do edits. 2 hour
  4. I will test different outcomes with the projector. 2 hours


Week Apr 29 — May 5

Project Update:

In seminar, I researched on how surveillance systems(facial cognition) have changed our analog identity into digital data that is abstract in just numbers and letters. In studio, instead of projecting the body onto the body, I want to create a space that is full of data by using a projector and mirrors. I did some tests on installation. For the texts in the projected image, I want to include what people say in daily life in context of social media and text abbreviations in communication, which is also related to my seminar research paper that people’s relationships are less intimate under the influence of social network and communication skills are weakened since people use more abbreviated words to express themselves.

Researched Artists and Websites:

In Order to Control

Duane Michals


For this week:

  1. I will make an Adobe software appointment with the learning center. 1 hr
  2. Edit the texts. 1hr
  3. Make the text image/video. 3 hr
  4. Test installation (find an ideal room and install the mirrors) 2 hr


Presentation photos and video documentation:

Video in projection

My understanding of visual culture has changed throughout the semester. At the beginning of the class, I see visual culture as a very broad definition of what we see every day such as advertisements and artwork. As I did more and more research about how artists explore identity in their work and got to read articles powerful designers wrote such as Who Gets to Say What to Whom, I gained a deeper and more constructed idea about visual culture which is that visual culture is how people receive information in the first place and it actually plays a very important role in society. Designers and artists have the privilege and power to decide how information is delivered to the larger population.


Studio has helped me build up my own research method with guidelines and the sequences of the assignments. I find that starting research with signifiers works for me pretty well since I used to have a hard time transforming concepts to specific materials or contents. With a focus on signifiers, my ideas are broadened and also it led me to a more material based research which I really enjoyed. In addition to that, this research method helps me when I am looking at other people’s work as I know where to start the observation with. I also learned that when looking at artwork, observation of the basic and detailed components and elements is essential since a good interpretation comes from good observation. Also, artists make choices of formal elements deliberately and as viewers, it is important to decode the messages by careful observation.

I am satisfied with the final outcome, but one thing that I think is less successful is that the projection is not ideal. It would be better if it took place in a smaller room and in ideal public spaces like Times Square. Another thing I would like to improve is the size of the texts in the projection. It seems the text is a little bit too big to read. the most challenging part of the final project was to come up with the two interactive activities and I really enjoyed the activities are being done by other people who did not know what it was about. I feel that I overcame the challenge by doing different tests and having a lot of thinking and finally having people to be a part of it which proved that the interactivity communicate with the viewers effectively.

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