Typograghy / Traditional & digital Painting / Fashion Graphic
Various in 2014, 2016
Individual works with generous help from teachers and friends
I spent two months in a Tibetan town (Shangri-La City, Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture) in our province learning traditionnal Thangka Painting in 2014. Afterward, I created various digital works related to what I have learned about the art and cultural challenge in Tibetan area in China.
Ethnic minorities in China sometimes are regarded as someone pristine but lagging behind the modern world. To fight against this cultural stereotype, I made these T-Shirts to demonstrate a distinctive modernity of minority arts and design that beyond the prevalent impression of minorities on majorities. The T-shirts are also advocating the local narratives on many popular concepts.
The culture t-shirt below talks about the story of discovery of Western world in last century. T-shirt Slogan: "My Goodness! My Goddess Chomolangma Her Holiness is not Mt. Everest!" The name "Mt. Everest"actually carries certain color of colonialism, so calling the peak “Chomolangma”, which means “Goddess” in Tibetan, is a relatively more respective way to local Tibetans.
The design below reveals an ironic situation that even a utopian place like Shangri-La cannot keep off the invasion of global consumerism, and to some extent, the result of globalization and consumerism. This T-shirt pattern combines “Gyaltang” and “Shangri-La”; the former is the Tibetan name of the township of Zhongdian (Official Chinese name of the township and nearby region) and the latter is the English name and new Chinese name that the local government of Zhongdian changed into decades ago when they find this fancy western concept would attract more tourists.
Generally, a sans serif font seems more modern than serif one, and it also displays small fonts size better on digital screen. However, all thedigital fonts of Tibetan available currently are serif, so I just had a try and came up with this design concept. I took Thai and Indic scripts for reference because of the similarity of their traditional calligraphy with Tibetan scripts and mature design styles in sans serif.