Zixuan Xie is a Chinese visual artist. Before her Masters at the RCA, Zixuan completed a BA in Graphic Design at Hunan University of Technology. Her current work focuses on the political and social impact of information and its mass distribution. Zixuan uses moving image, design and sound to propose alternative forms of communication, reinvesting information with affect and its readership with agency.
I often think about our relationship with information. Public information can control one's mind and impact perception of things. In many cases the information we receive is one-sided and yet all live in a society built by information: a landscape for everyone, though paradoxically not necessarily a shared one.
The media have a great deal of power over the content of information and its editing. It is easy to reshape information and imbue it with opinion: this can influence not only the accepted narratives or perception of events but, crucially, the actual meaning of what is conveyed in a news bulletin or newspaper, and the trajectories of news as information, and misinformation alike, travels on.
My aim in this project is to raise awareness of the ambiguity around the free newspaper phenomenon and the ethics of editorial selection and design in this context. Free newspapers, with their traditional materiality of paper and print appear authentic and docile in their accessible communication. However, one should ask some of the following questions:
What is the purpose of giveaway newspapers? What is being prioritised within a free newspaper? How does the newspaper function as a vehicle of dissemination: activating or deactivating the public? Is it possible to harness and redirect the mass dissemination radius of the giveaway newspaper? What else can be conveyed in these free ‘innocent’ newspapers?
Size:37 x 60 cm
How do you think about the relationship between newspaper manufacturers and those who receive information?
How do you think about the impact of newspapers on people
as a vehicle for free information delivery?
How can we think about the relationship between people and information
through the gestures they make when they reach for a newspaper?