Interview: Feixue Mei
Luca Curci talks with Feixue Mei during MIXING IDENTITIES, second appointment of CANVAS INTERNATIONAL ART FAIR 2023, held in Venice, at Palazzo Albrizzi-Capello.
Feixue Mei is a designer/illustrator/artist from China and based in Missouri, US. She has chaired and presented at numerous international conferences such as the CAA Conference and the SECAC Conference. Her research has been published by various international peer-reviewed journals including Transformative Works and Cultures. She and her work have been featured on Creative Boom, Aesthetica, Art & Education, and other press. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, including Fanny Fox Decker Gallery at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), Palazzo Bembo in Italy, and Nanyang Technology University Centre for Contemporary Art in Singapore.
Luca Curci – How did you get to your current artistic practice?
Feixue Mei – When I was a little girl, I spent a lot of time watching animation and reading manga. This is the very beginning of my love of illustration and image-making. I also draw my own comic books, create my own stories and share them online. Now, I make creative projects about identity, subculture, fans, and the online community.
LC – Which artists have somehow had an influence on your work?
FM – I love surrealist artists like Salvador Dalí and René Magritte. Their works are very witty and thought-provoking, they often draw ordinary objects in an unusual setting and challenge observers’ preconditioned perceptions of reality.
LC – Which subject are you working on?
FM – Right now I’m working on three themes: identity formation, subculture, and fan community.
LC – What issues do you intend to deal with in the future?
FM – Identity formation, subculture, and fan community are very important parts of my interest, I want to make more work on these topics in the future.
LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
FM – Yes: they’re focused on cultures and visual migrate, and go across geographical boundaries through the internet and social media. Fluid identity, otherness, mistranslation, displacement, and the struggle to find one’s own community are key themes of my practice.
LC – Did your style change over the years? In which way?
FM – I create conceptual, iconic imagery, and rich narrative details. My work explores publications, illustrations, sequential arts, videos, installations, and performances. Internet culture, animation, comics, Surrealism, and Chinese folk decorative art are among the influences that shaped my intricate style.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the exhibition?
FM – Mixing Identities is a great theme. With a strong desire to communicate, I believe in Maximalism – the philosophy of “more is more.” Information is overloaded on the internet, and we have many identities online and offline. Those identities and labels interact, struggle and fight with others and finally tell who we are.
LC – We were attracted by your last artistic production, has the artwork presented been created for the exhibition or as a part of preexisting works?
FM – It is a part of preexisting works. The project is called “Otherness”. In the context of globalization, cultural manipulation, and language adaptation, how the typographic landscape around the internet, fan space, and shared online platforms influence contemporary interaction and shape cultural identity. A story between me and my internet persona.
LC- Would you suggest a collaboration with ITSLIQUID Group?
FM – Of course, it is a great chance to show your artworks in well-known venues in Italy!
LC – What do you think about the organization of our event?
FM – It was a great Event!