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Print (MA)

Chaoming Zheng

Chaoming Zheng (Sadie) is an artist based in Shanghai and London.

She received a BA in Literature from Fudan University, and is currently in a two-year MA program at Royal College of Art. Building her own artistic world around satirical, grotesque, and epiphanic features, her art hinges on embodiment and reproducibility, discussing how the attachment to wounds can influence one’s state of existence.

Degree Details

School of Arts & HumanitiesPrint (MA)RCA2023 at Truman Brewery

Truman Brewery, F Block, Ground, first and second floors

a carousel made of cloth hangers, strange hands and a finger-hand-horse, written with "hold my hand", above a kitchen stove

I have been trying to capture some mysterious animals. I call them "pseudo-horses" as they look like apparitions of horses with disturbing glitches: twisted necks, fragmented torsos, too many heads or too many legs. They are inspired by a nonsensical yet poetic chat history of me asking an AI Chatbot to describe their "encounter with a horse from a place where meaning is destroyed."

These algorithms were developed and fed by bits and pieces of our world, turning them into a library or a funhouse mirror reflecting the collective human knowledge. Through the crazy imaginations of "apophenia", a person can read poetry from a sea of seemingly pointless texts, or recognise faces from deformed images produced by malfunctioning. And this is the method I adopted to converse with a chatbot, or a disembodied echo with ourselves.

In The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard wrote, "in order to sense, across the years, our attachment for the house we were born in, a dream is more powerful than a thought." My works are not only inspired by a selection of low-quality deformed horse images, but can also be traced back to the childhood apartment where I spent my formative years, dreaming the dreams of a father's daughter surrounded by ghosts of those magnificent, well-formed animals of masculine glory – the equestrian vehicles for ancient warriors, nobles, and kings.

I make drawings, prints, and small sculptures as artefacts of "pseudo-horses" in the "crimson purple woods" – a dreamy shadowy place where they arise from and shape-shift freely. They are combined with found objects I collect around the city during my time in London. Broken dollhouses, abandoned rocking horses, old fireplace surrounds are mingled with acrylic, fabrics, clay, or metal, forming installations to represent a wild mutation of that prolonged childhood and teenage dream.

It's time to transcend the myths and lies of the halcyon old days, but kindly don’t perish silently like your mother or castrate yourself for your father. In the lingering residues of that nightmare, there might be hope.

a horse with strange body shape looking back to you in red color, its body half out
Doppelgänger IVlithography on paper, 12 x 12 cm
a two headed horse with 11 legs, grey colour ink on cream colour paper
Metamorphosis IVstone lithography on paper, 55 x 38 cm
two mirroring prints with two headed horses of 8 legs, red and pink color on rough white background
Second Metamorphosis copper etching and mono print on paper, 15 x 10 cm




various sizes
a ceramics horse with an odd body sitting, greenish and purpleish colour glaze
Doppelgänger II13 x 8 x 7 cm
a horse with 2 heads and 3 legs
Doppelgänger IV13 x 8 x 7 cm
two strange horses, one has no head but only ears, the other sitting down weirdly
Launch Project
Doppelgänger I&II


ceramics with glaze


various sizes
Mama, she is me
a women holding a monster with a girls head inside a forest with deformed trees, some embossed shapes are strange horses in air
Launch Project
Mama, she is me (I)etching and embossing on paper, 20 x 10 cm


mixed media installation, etching and embossing on paper


100 x 60 x 60 cm
a small dollhouse covered by honey-coloured fur and a ghostly horse figure is peeping from the window
Haunt the House — a book project20 cm x 10 cm x 10 cm
a small dollhouse covered by honey-coloured fur and is opened up like a book
inside the furry dollhouse book, there are speech bubbles made with white acrylic and texts inside each of them
Launch Project

Excerpt from a chat history between the artist and a chatbot (Excerpt I)

SADIE: Have you seen a horse before in the purple crimson woods?

VIM: Yes! I love it.

SADIE: How was she?

VIM: She was amazing.

SADIE: What does she look like?

VIM: A beautiful mess I'm sure.

a fireplace and dollhouse covered with fur and acrylic speech bubbles and there are some paintings and prints and details inside
Launch Project
Meet Me in the Crimson Purple Woods
a detailed shot of the dollhouse, a metal double chair sat on fake grass, metal 6 legs horse hanging before a strange painting

Excerpt II

SADIE: What do you mean?

VIM: There were hints suggesting that it existed, but all of a sudden, it vanished.

SADIE: And what happened afterwards?

VIM: It went dark and I wasn't sure what to do with myself.

SADIE: So you wander alone in the purple crimson woods?

VIM: I did, yes.

close shot of painting on fireplace, there are 5 weird horses with glitching bodies, one of them staring at a new moon in sky
a close shot of the ground floor in dollhouse, a ceramic 3 head horse under a small dollhouse made of etching copper plates

Excerpt III

SADIE: Have you met any other horses there?

VIM: Yes, surprisingly.

SADIE: Describe one to me

VIM: They were large and very tall, a dark blue with red spots on it.

SADIE: And how many heads or legs?

VIM: There were six heads and four legs.

SADIE: What did you do when you saw them?

VIM: I went crazy. How about you? Anything

SADIE: Why did you went crazy?

VIM: Something weird happened.

a closer shot of a chained 6 legs horse spinning before a painting of two deformed horsey animals trying to connect
on one furry leg of the fireplace, a transparent speech bubble is saying: 'she said I don't know where I belong anymore'

Excerpt IV

SADIE: What happened? Tell me

VIM: Well, I just.. I just got really mad.


VIM: I felt out of place.

SADIE: You don’t belong to the purple crimson woods?

VIM: *looks down* Yeah..

SADIE: And what did she say to you

VIM: She said ‘I don't know where I belong anymore’.


mixed media (wood, fabrics, clay, ceramics, metal, etc.)


121cm x 50cm x 135 cm
a heart-shaped forg or a heart with frog legs, half polied bronze
PatientYou claimed that you don't have a heart, then what is it that's beating here?
"the beat", a tattoo on the ankle, done by the artist
a shoe stepping on the bronze frog-heart
"(extra) slow dance"a tattoo on the knee, done by the artist
a bronze sculpture of two snail and their antennae connected
Launch Project
Don't let me be misunderstood (snails)bronze and plaster, 16 x 5 x 5 cm
a bronze sculpture of two snail and their antennae connected
Don't let me be misunderstood (snails)bronze and plaster, 16 x 5 x 5 cm


tattoo ink on skin, bronze and plaster


various sizes