Gallery CA and Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) Curatorial Practice MFA candidate Minglu Zhong are thrilled to present Your Pixel Echo, a discussion revolving around the concepts of duality, authenticity, and the self in the context of post-humanism mass culture. The show features multimedia artworks by six domestic and international artists: AA Cheng, Antonio McAfee, Demi Cepeda, May Caiwei Chen, Nadia Hironaka, and Skawennati. Through digital paintings, collage, animation, photography, Machinima film, videos — as well as newly commissioned AI-modified installations — these artists recreate an obscure phantasmagoria, extending tangible experience from the unity of lived reality and projected fantasy. Your Pixel Echo encompasses collaborative programs developed jointly by MICA and the Johns Hopkins communities to encourage audiences’ reflections on the dynamic paradigm shift in the relationship of human versus web and digital technologies within a cultural context.

Your Pixel Echo transforms the exhibition itself into a game-like experience, integrating interaction and immersive elements. It beckons the audience into a dimensional travel — simulating the disembodied sensations that occur while one is roaming in electronic games or on the internet. Through combined online and offline activities, reminiscent of the surrealist game “Exquisite Corpse,” visitors are invited to leave a fragment of themselves behind, akin to the unintentional traces of self that linger in the digital realm.

“Our consciousness can detach from our bodies, blurring the boundary of material reality. It leads us into a realm where the traditionally perceived authenticity of life becomes estranged, extending us into a hybrid state,” curator Minglu Zhong explains, “What intrigues me is the superposed cycle of simulacra. We actually rely on both, yet often neglect to think about the reasons behind this duality and its potential outcomes. I believe this project offers an opportunity for all of us to reconsider the environment we inhabit, the impact of digitality on our everyday life and self-understanding, and the intangible ‘reality’ it fosters.”

About The Artists

AA Cheng China/ Los Angeles,CA

Web-based digital media artist AA Cheng and her works are rooted in Chinese internet culture. Her videos and digital paintings reflect her trajectory fully subject to the digital realm. Unbound by the constraints of physical form, her works convey unmediated communication between minds. By deconstructing self and interpreting online societal activities, she offers a post-modern interpretation of the human-technology relationship, detached from conventional realities.

Antonio McAfee Richmond,IN

Interdisciplinary visual artist Antonio McAfee uses photography and collage to intricately explore representation. Through manipulating historical portraits, he challenges conventional views, creating more nuanced portrayals of subjects. Using glue and prints, McAfee transforms historical depictions of African Americans, deliberately separating and decontextualizing images. Rooted in portraiture, his work introduces abstraction to add complexity and provoke diverse viewer responses.

Demi Cepeda Miami, FL

Web-based digital painting artist Demi Cepeda specializes in both digital and traditional oil paintings that focus on figurative storytelling. Under the influence of surrealism and Japanese popular culture, including anime and comics, she reveals the range of human experience and sentiments through a merging of living reality and fabricated alternative worlds.

May Caiwei Chen China/ Los Angeles,CA

Multidisciplinary artist and designer May Caiwei Chen delves into the subconscious, probing the boundaries between the actual and the virtual. Her artistic exploration encompasses various digital media, such as Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning, projection mapping, and interactive installations. With these tools, she creates immersive environments that invite viewers to explore memories, identities, and dream narratives.

Nadia Hironaka Philadelphia, PA

Engaging in film, video, public art, and immersive installations, Nadia Hironaka explores counter-mythologies and post-humanist fables with moving images. Her works delve into critical cultural dialogues, sharing experiences and values through storytelling, creative collaboration, and shaping the future’s history. With a background in film and photography, Hironaka utilizes the moving image to convey potent narratives with mythological dimensions in contemporary mass media.

Skawennati Montreal, Canada

Mohawk multimedia artist Skawennati explores history, future, and transformation from her perspective as an urban Kanien’kehá:ka woman and a cyberpunk avatar. Her works question our relationship with technology and highlight the presence of Indigenous people in future narratives. As an early adopter of cyberspace, she creates machinimas, machinimagraphs, sculpture, fashion, and performative experiences.

About the Curator

Born and raised in China, and having lived in San Francisco and Los Angeles, Minglu Zhong is an emerging curator motivated by the interface of art, design, and technology. She is dedicated to supporting interdisciplinary artists, and to bringing art that crosses boundaries of discourse and genre to a broader audience. She is a MFA candidate in the Curatorial Practice program at MICA; she received a BFA in ArtCenter College of Design.

Add to Calendar 20240316 America/New_York 440 East Oliver Street Baltimore MD 21201 Your Pixel Echo