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Digital Direction (MA)

Jimmy Chen

As an interdisciplinary artist, Jimmy is constantly delving into the complex interplay between virtual and real worlds, exploring the essence of humanity and truth.

He loves exploring the significance of speculative design in today's design landscape and discussing how the combination of art and technology will stimulate public debate and the ethical issues faced therein. Jimmy puts these thoughts into his projects such as the TeleFood Project, which explores the possibility of food as a bridge between the virtual and the real, and Armpit Kingdom, which seeks to experiment with the possibility of adding an olfactory experience to VR interactions.

In his recent research, he seeks to find a way to resolve the conflict between Eastern medical culture and Western science through an animistic interpretation of the Reishi's application. By immersing himself in non-human centered experimental practices and employing techniques like photogrammetry and VR technology, Jimmy’s study of Animism seeks to challenge any tangible entity with intangible emotions, cultures and souls, and to question the unquestionable nature of reality and truth.

Degree Details

School of CommunicationDigital Direction (MA)RCA2023 at Battersea and Kensington

RCA Kensington, Darwin Building, Lower-ground and Upper-ground floors

Journey to the Reishi

"Truth is ultimately nothing more than the collective synchronicity of perception".

Most of my stories are presenting my reflections and opinions on contemporary society from a critical or introspective perspective, which is a form of thought experiment that jumps between seriousness and playfulness. In the context of 'Truth', what is real and what is fiction? What is truth and what is belief? Where is the world of the soul of everything?

I will probably never have the answers to these questions, but I am willing to keep on experimenting.

UE5 Test images
Journey to the Reishi is a study that investigate the coexistence of Eastern medical culture and Western science by focusing on the animistic interpretation of Reishi’s application. Drawing inspiration from the Hmong culture's unique approach to dispose souls (help them return to the origin), this research explores the potential connections between that practice and the traditional use of Reishi, questioning whether the perceived decline in its efficacy is attributable to the entrapment of its soul.
Armpit Kingdom explore the possibility of using human pheromones as chemosensory signals to communicate and interact, drawing inspiration from the long-standing use of pheromones by animals to coexist with nature. Our aim is to transform our perception of the world by imagining a society where human communication and interaction are revolutionised by the scientific discovery and application of human pheromones - We call this world Armpit Kingdom.
Launch Project
AnnTeleFood project explores the possibility of using food as a medium to connect the real and digital worlds. The film Ann is based on the idea that a big-tech Eastern company, The TeleFood Company, has the ability to upload the consciousness of a deceased person into the digital world, allowing for non-verbal communication (food sharing experience) between the living and the uploaded. We explored the role of food in Eastern ritual culture and how it can be used as a medium to bridge the digital and the real.