Skip to main content
Sound Design

Jiajing Zhao

Zhao Jiajing (b. China) is a musician and interdisciplinary artist based in London.

Zhao Jiajing’s practices spread across spatial sound composition, performance, and installation. His approach to composition focuses on crafting immersive cross-sensory experiences through sound. He works extensively with chaotic and generative systems to create uncanny aesthetics. Key themes of his works include time, consciousness, nature, and spirituality. Since 2019, he has been collaborating with pioneering theatrical groups, performers, and installation artists to produce music and sound.

Selected performances, exhibitions, and presentations:

2022 ELECTIFY, IKLECTIK ArtLab, London

2022 Everyday is Spatial Imersive Audio Conference - University of Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire

2022 Aporia - AMP Gallery, London

2021 Ongoing Mystical Experiments - The Untitled Space, Shanghai

2020 IRCAM, Centre Pompidou, Paris


LUMINOUS by RCA & LG Display Art and Design Competition Finalist Exhibition

September 28th - October 4th 2022

I think of my sonic projects as seeds that sprout in unforeseen variations. With chaotic algorithms I build generative systems that sounds can grow freely within. With recorded sound materials I create acousmatic compositions where many sonic possible worlds may be generated.

This open-ended approach to sound also applies to other mediums I engage with: video art, installation, and performance. The kernel of my works are uncertainties and possibilities that can result in plural forms and experiences. I think of it as a curated journey that contains many possible paths, instead of collapsing into a fixed route. This allows me to survey metaphysical concepts including experiential time, dreams, and spirituality. The magic is revealed during the process of entanglement: the possibilities of the work being realised and combined with the active imagination of the spectator.

Finalist - LUMINOUS by RCA & LG Displays Art and Design Competition Sponsor: RCA & LG Displays

Time-flux is a generative audio-visual installation reimagining the form of time as a free flux of chaotic experiences, inspired by Henri Bergson’s concept of durée.

Since modern time-keeping technologies emerged, humanity has created an artificial time environment punctuated by mechanical contrivances and electronic pulses. Obligated to live within the standardised time system has become a common struggle. How could one ever equal ten seconds of delights to ten seconds of suffering? Henri Bergson addresses this problem with the idea of duration (durée), which focuses on the overlooked experiential dimension of time. He describes the form of time as “a bottomless, bankless river, which flows without assignable force in a direction which could not be defined.” 

In the same spirit, Time-flux captures the fluidity and chaoticity of subjective experiences of time. The installation features 4 layers of transparent OLED display and a 4-channel sound collage. The fluid particles on the screens act as snapshots of the virtual entity of time. Benefiting from the transparent OLED display from LGD, the generative shapes can pulse through the space at various paces, creating an experience of flowing continuum between screens. The sound collage utilises granular and time-stretching audio processing to recreate the distortion and non-linearity experience of time perception.

The core of the work is a probability system of controlled chaos, created by modular synthesisers and a computational algorithm based on the Lorenz system. It sends combinations of constantly morphing signals to influence the visual and sound generation, resulting in drifting visual and sonic outcomes.

Time-flux is an existential anthem to the overlooked experiential dimension of time beyond mechanical measurements. It is also a call for humans to look at time in another way and rethink our relationship with it.

Binaural playback of the 16-channel spatial sound composition.

Dream Studies - Durée focuses on the distortion of time in dreams. In dreams time is liberated from the ticking clocks and taken over by the chaotic unconsciousness. Time extends or flashes according to our emotions, becoming non-linear flux in motion.

Dream Studies is an ongoing project exploring the chaotic mental states in dreams with sound collages and visuals. The project initiates on gathering written or oral records of dreams and corresponding sonic materials. According to the records, I then untilise chaotic algorithm and generative microsound systems to find dreams, possible ones that might have once occurred in brains.


Spatial sound composition



Back to Ocean is a 16-channel spatial sound composition exploring the bodily and spiritual connection with the ocean. The work is inspired by a near-death-experience (NDE) of drowning in the open water of Saipan. Upon crossing the borderline of losing consciousness, an ineffable sensation of belonging and boundaryless emerged to the artist as if going back to the mother’s womb. The composition is structured based on the NDE to craft a sonic narrative in four stages: immersion, exploration, deconstruction, and reformation. Materials employed for the composition are predominately recordings of water and human body.


Spatial sound composition