Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Coronavirus project update - April 1

I have been thinking what the coronavirus means to us, to all humans. It makes people suffer badly or worse, not just physically but also mentally, challenging the deepest vault of modern humanity. Politics, reputations, finance, everything the elites cares about in these three months have been the priority leveraging the threat of virus. Yet, the virus has proven what it’s capable of. I don’t want to play the devil’s advocate, but the virus is playing a role of mirror, reflecting who is selfish and who truly cares about others.
After the breakout in Asia, mask has become a symbol, not of protection but hatred for some. It appeared hard for some to understand the function of mask not just against spreading but as a preventive way to guard oneself. Others, primarily Asians, who were taught to wear masks were caught in this misconception. The severity finally came to attention that yesterday the March 31, Trump claimed to foresee the scenario of all Americans recommended to wear masks in public. It is never too late. However, debates over whether pets should wear mask too were heated in Asia after Hong Kong confirmed a second dog was infected. This news inspired me to draw pictures of putting masks on pet’s face. Some might be hilarious at first glance, but serious as a question posing towards the mask policies. When the audience might be enjoying the cuties, they are encouraged to replace the animal figures with humans. If we do care so much about our pets, why not to give the same condolence to ourselves?

       Attention. Are we living in a video game like Plague Inc.? Or the Resident Evil? 2020 is too cruel to be a reality. In case we are facing the global virus crisis like these two video games (wait…yes, we are! After the COVID19 spread to Greenland, it would have won the Plague Inc. game.), what should human do? What would the world look like? Players are assisted with a variety of mechanism like music, visual impact, plots to get immersed in the large setting. When it happens in reality, we don’t get a background music to get people’s attention and arouse their mood. It’s not going to happen even when the number of confirmed cases rose to 200k. We don’t get our BGM, neither can we control how the plot goes, but we can get our visual part. In this poster-like sketch, I want to give heavy visual stimulation using colors and patterns to get attention. It is also ideal to fit in the study of Mail Art: simple, decorative, contentious, yet contagious.

       It deserves a novel. An art project will also do though. I booked my ticket back to China at the end of spring break. Let alone its unreasonable price, the flight got canceled one day before. I booked another one, and got canceled, another one, and got re-scheduled by the airline. 52-hour in total from the moment I got in an Uber at Wannamaker Dr. to touching the bed in quarantined hotel. Now it’s my 9th out of 14 days in quarantine. My door is locked from outside, open only three times a day when the service delivers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Two temperature checks a day, shouting out the number to the service staff. That is the only communication with the real outside world, but I am treated well. Too much time I can think about future, life, but too cold to get off bed because the air conditioner is locked to prevent virus spreading through ventilation. I shall create a visual novel of my journey against the virus. This is a sketch of the staff delivering my breakfast. 

1 comment:

  1. Wow Hillman!
    Thanks so much for telling us about your quarantine. What a powerful experience for you. I can't imagine what that must be like. Very glad you're feeling good and taken care of. I didn't know that animals can get the virus - but makes sense. Thanks for sharing these thoughts and I look forward to seeing how your drawings progress.