3/26-4/2/2020 Wen Xi: Tracing Fire

March 26-April 2, 2020 / A Multimedia Exploration of the Virtual as Real
Location: Parkway Theatre
5 W North Ave, Baltimore, MD 21201

Wen Xi: Tracing Fire
Presented by the Sawyer Seminar, the Center for Advanced Media Studies (CAMS) at JHU, and the Parkway Theatre
Curated by Bernadette Wegenstein (JHU)

Opening Reception: March 26, 6:00 PM
Artist’s Talk: March 27, 5:30 PM

Wen Xi: Tracing Fire is a multimedia installation project that zeroes in on the historic Wen Xi Fire that happened in 1938 in Changsha, China. By tracing the representations of this traumatic event, Chang explores how the “reality” of the historic event is mediated by cultural memories which become a “virtual” story of the past. Chang deploys a variety of digital media in developing this project from documentary, to virtual reality, digital print, and photogrammetry. Each of them becomes a different tangent line to differentiate the function of this past story. While the past, present, and future do not exist chronologically in the timeline of this installation, they nevertheless converge into different kinds of “digital debris.” Like the formation of a rock each of these media helps in calibrating the location of this historic fire.

Haoran Chang is a multidisciplinary artist who uses video installation, virtual reality, and digital print in exploring the social construction and digital mediation in contemporary society. Chang received a Bachelor degree from University of Wisconsin Madison and MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art with critical study concentration in 2018. Chang is also the founder of Chameleon Gallery, an online virtual reality contemporary art gallery that focuses on bridging traditional media and virtual reality in creating, exhibiting, and distributing art. Chang has been awarded Mount Royal School of Art Merit scholarship, MICA Up/Start Competition award, and Vermont Studio Center Artist award. Chang has exhibited in Cardinal Space (Baltimore), Baltimore-Washington International Airport, Vox Populi (Philadelphia), CICA Museum (South Korea), and many more.

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Also consider attending the following programs with Haoran Chang at the Parkway Theatre.

Haoran Chang “Wen Xi: Tracing Fire”
March 26, 7 PM Breaking Codes program (preceded by an Installation Opening Reception, 6pm) With our March Breaking Codes program we welcome Haoran Chang, a multidisciplinary artist who uses video installation, virtual reality, and digital print in exploring the social construction and digital mediation in contemporary society. Chang’s installation Wen Xi: Tracing Fire (on view in the Parkway’s Dietz Lounge and the second floor lobby, March 26-April 2) zeroes in on the historic Wen Xi Fire that happened in 1938 in Changsha, China. By tracing the representations of this traumatic event, Chang explores how the “reality” of the historic event is mediated by cultural memories which become a “virtual” story of the past. Chang deploys a variety of digital media in developing this project, from documentary, to virtual reality, digital print, and photogrammetry. Each of them becomes a different tangent line to differentiate the function of this past story. While the past, present, and future do not exist chronologically in the timeline of this installation, they nevertheless converge into different kinds of “digital debris.” Like the formation of a rock, each of these media helps in calibrating the location of this historic fire.

Chang will talk about his work and present single channel versions of Cao’s House and Hymn to the Fallen: Part I as part of a Breaking Codes presentation at 7 pm on March 26, following the installation’s opening.

March 27, 4-7 PM Breaking Codes workshop
“Immersive Media 101 with Haoran Chang”
Immersive Media 101 with Haoran Chang will introduce participants to using game engines and expressive media, such as virtual reality, in their independent artistic practice and storytelling, without requiring any coding skills. As part of this tutorial, Chang will discuss his use of photogrammetry and real time virtual production in his own practice and demonstrate how this links to his projects conceptually. Participants will need to bring their own laptops and download software ahead of time. Maximum: 15 people. FREE with RSVP.