Skip to main content
Digital Direction (MA)


Maiyi Zhou (she/ her) is a game scene concept designer living in Wuhan, China. She specialises in the use of 3D production, graphic, installation work and film to express her work. As a highly empathetic person, Maiyi's work is mostly based on social events and nature, which have changed dramatically due to pandemics and rapid urban development over the years. Maiyi's work critically examines contemporary society and explores various themes such as language, psychology, the real estate industry, elderly care, sexuality and nature. Her main media include film, installation and sculpture, which allow her to interact with the viewer on site and present her ideas in an understandable way.

She achieved a BA in Visual Communication Design at the Jianghan University of China and is currently pursuing an MA in Digital direction at the Royal College of Art in the UK.

Degree Details

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

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

Personal photograph of the author.

The Redemption of Alienation (2023, MAIYI ZHOU)

"Ecosystems maintain relative stability because they have the ability to self-regulate to redeem themselves." In recent years, scholars have discovered that plants possess the ability to absorb and remove metal from soil and lake through their rhizomes. This ability can be used for pollution treatment and energy re-cycling. The alienation of the plant's morphology in response to the intervention of heavy metals forms a part of the redemption of the ecosystem cycle. But humans try to create super plants for their own benefit and value in order to extract and reuse heavy metals faster and more often. The ability of plants to do this has caused me some thought already. I created a future world that is heavily polluted due to over-development of cities and factories to tell the story of the redemption of a new kind of ecosystem.

Photo by Wanwan Li

Panoramic view of the Super Plant Lab modelling.
The laboratory table holds research equipment and festering plants.
The red danger icon on the screen of the research plant is flashing frantically.
The front of the laboratory computer screen with warning icons all over it.
A large number of plants died in the petri dish on the other side.
The ceiling of the laboratory is a mess of broken and disorganized wires.
The researcher looked in despair at the dead plants in the huge petri dish in the very middle of the laboratory.
The camera moves from the researcher's feet to the face to reveal the last plant growing out of the human face.