Cross-Course Reflection

Xingman is not yet an artist. She is just enjoying actualizing crazy thoughts and ideas she has in mind via different media and materials. Her interested field is rather broad, from drawing/painting to photography, filming, and animation…she loves exploring various ways of expression to interpret her ideas. That’s why she has chosen Fine Arts as her major, so she’s given more freedom to try and do whatever she wants.

Across her first year at Parsons, it is not hard to tell that she focuses a lot on putting “humor” in her work. Whether it is “dark humor” that combines violence with humanity, or “hilarious humor” that comes with absurdity and nonsense, she can always connect different elements with a sense of humor in her works. During the year she tried many new ways of transforming her ideas, such as using materials like foam board, cardboard, wires, wood, and fabrics to create three-dimensional works. This learning experience excites her a lot since she used to be more concentrated on two-dimensional works, while now, she’s acknowledged how to utilize the sense of space and create substantial objects. Furthermore, throughout the first year of studying, she also enhanced her ability of researching. Now she is more directed and orientated when she needs to start an academic research for her project. She now knows how to locate her research field, how and where to find resources, how to filter and pick out the essential resources that are useful for her. With this skill of researching, she’s having more concrete and supportive backup to state her works in studio making.

The mechanical toy-like caterpillar she made for her Space/Materiality definitely has outstanding meaning for her. She struggled a lot during the whole making process. Back to the very first beginning, she did tons of research not only on caterpillars, how they move and how their bodies function when they are moving, but also the mechanic and technical theory on machines. She made a brave step in trying a completely new material—wood to make this object. Being unfamiliar with the material as well as lack of experience on manipulating machines, she failed several times. Though she did feel frustrated and had to face lots of problems, she finally came over the difficulties and completed her work, which is considered as well designed and well working. Another impressive project is the model and couch she made for her studio course. In this project, her journey of doing research is particularly notable. Before she finally settled on her idea of what installation to make, she spent months slowing developing her thoughts. Including choosing the site, spending time observing it, and studying all the essential elements in the site. The range of the research is incredibly and surprisingly wide and detailed, she not only studied the circulation of the habitats, but also the layout and furniture design in the site. After months of research, after uncounted times of selecting and eliminating, she eventually came up with her final workpiece and even made an actual sittable couch in full scale to present her intervention.

Obviously, she is looking forward to her future learning life in Parsons. She is engaged in 2d works as well as 3d works right now, and she still will. In the future, she expects to continue exploring deeper into various fields such as filming/animation and interactive/installation art.

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