Skip to main content
Information Experience Design (MA)

Sihan Meng

This project looks at the social class gap, revealed via the news, as The Poor Door. This project uses 'doors' as a central concept and metaphor, with sound and moving image enabling dialectic reflection on the relationship between the structure of social status and the distribution of wealth in society.

I explored the origins and background of urban development and documentation in my current city of London, using a combination of fieldwork and questionnaire interviews. I selected Kensington Apartments and Embassy Gardens Apartments for field research and taking photographs, interviewing people in the vicinity of these flats, and conducting recordings, including the sound of different doors closing, and filming doors opening and closing.

Through experiencing the work, the audience is invited to experience the different doors continuously opening and closing in the film, gaining a deeper experience and understanding of how the dichotomy of social class affects different people in all aspects of their lives due to differences in income levels and the solidification of social classes, as crystallised in the solidity and dynamic structure of the door.

The works aims to inspire discussions of how a fully economically successful city must benefit everyone, not just those who can afford to live in luxury.

Degree Details

School of CommunicationInformation Experience Design (MA)RCA2023 at Battersea and Kensington

RCA Kensington, Darwin Building, Upper-ground floor

Ladies have access to fine restaurants and casinos, the poor in the news do not

I walked around the streets of London, recording the sound of different doors closing on the street as a sound test and recording the constant opening and closing of different doors as a visual representation.

The existence of The Poor Door seems to be a confrontation between the rich and the poor, a class antagonism. I chose 'door' as the keyword for my project and made an experimental music and video study around 'door', recording the sound of different doors closing and filming the constant closing of different doors. Socially entrenched images of the status of the rich and the poor lead people to consider whether their financial means match before entering different places. Using performance footage, the film captures the opening and closing of doors in the city, some of which are only open to the poor, while others are only open to the rich who can afford it, each making a judgement and choice before crossing the threshold.

Field photography
Detail of the door
The Cyber World of Doors


Video installation