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The Neighborhood

Digital Illustration, Motion Graphics

➰Project: The Neighborhood: A Look Through A Tube At A Leopard
➰Client: Self, MCAD MFA Thesis Project

➰Credits:
Music + Sound design: Lister Rossel
Art direction, illustration and Motion graphics: Tianrui Zhang

➰Awards:
MFA Van Derlip Award 2015, Minneapolis College of Art & Design
AI-AP International Motion Art Awards 4


My generation came of age during the shift in China’s economy from a Planned Market to an Open Market. The current system offers a great deal of new experiences that allow us to think about our unique identity. Like most citizens, I enjoy the opportunities that this current market provides. However, I’m also interested in the simplicity of life that occurred in the past. 

I have created two posters to visualize the everyday existence of people living in the community where I grew up in the 1990s and the 2000s. Events and behaviors are visually represented by cultural metaphors specific to the Chinese experience. This project is primarily a documentation describing life as it existed in the past and suggests how those communities might be living in today’s world, portrayed through the eyes of a contemporary individual. 

These posters present both the similarities and differences between the contrasting economic periods. However, it also serves as a reflection of how I identify myself as a contemporary Chinese citizen—excited about my future and proud of my past. 

"A look through a tube at a leopard": a Chinese idiom that means to conjure up an image of the whole thing by looking at a part of it.

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