Behind the Lens
After the big lockdown in 2020, the music scene in Western Sydney had suffered and eventually adapted to the pandemic by increasingly innovative music videos, virtual performances and social media promotions.
Behind the Lens was a program inspired by this resilence. It aimed to pare emerging musicians with multidisciplinary creatives and videographers to create a multi-sensory live music experience. I was commissioned by Fairfield City Museum & Gallery to design an identity for it.
The brief asked for something that went beyond just pretty imagery and cool typography—it needed to evoke the sonic, visual and tactile experience that the performances promised to deliver.
I was interested in the fourth wall, a performance convention in which an invisible, imagined wall separates the performer with the audience. This fourth wall is quite rigid in cinema and theatre but when it comes to music, it seems to be very fluid. Artists have been playing around with personas since the birth of MTV and onto our current age of Instagram and Tiktok.
Hence, I played with this concept by pixelation and distortion of the brand’s typography and imagery. This created a liminal zone between reality and fantasy, an invisible wall for the audience to reach into and for the artists to break.
Identity, Publication, 2021
Fairfield City Museum & Gallery reached out to me to design the identity and marketing collaterals for an upcoming exhibition called Here: After
The theme of Here: After was about a future different to the kind depicted by sci-fi movies - none of that sterile and dystopian environment we were so accustomed to and conditioned to think it was the only way to be. The future in Here: After was inclusive, nurturing and saturated with colour and possibilities. Therefore, my task was to steer from the tropes of cold harsh machine aesthetic and embrace something softer and kinder.
Inspired by the imagery of fauna and flora thriving from the ancient ruin of Angkor Wat and the vividly surreal world in the film Annihilation, I started the creative process by searching for a typeface that was both organic and futuristic. I finally found that in MuiMcNeil's FF ThreeSix 31 which is an exquisite modular geometric display type with 8 weights that can be nested in one another.
The result resembled a colony of neon fungi coming alive.
The Seed Council is a community wellbeing and arts program developed by Think+Do Tank Foundation to promote connectedness and community; creativity; and growth for recently-arrived refugee and migrant women.
ARRIVAL is part one of an anthology published by multilingual bookstore Lost in Books, originally published in 2018. When the first edition went out of print, I was tasked to design the second edition.
ARRIVAL was a collection of writing, poetry, art and photography by South Western Sydney locals about their experiences and musing about Australia as migrants and/or children of migrant. The tone was sometimes serious, sometimes sarcastic and most of the time reflective of being "the other".
As a migrant arriving to Australia in 2007, this project struck a chord in me. Coming from a small town with no English, I remember the struggle of navigating through the Sydney airport guided only by the arrow signs. I was overwhelmed with wonder, confusion, and fear. Would they accept me for who I am? Do I have to change to belong?
These questions still stand over a decade later. I hope one day this society will progress to the level in which it aspires to. So that us migrant can be kinder to ourselves and those who come after us.