Jiangyuan Ai

The Wheel of Covid

Class of: 2025

Major: Fashion Design BFA

Medium: Multi-media

Faculty: John Jerard

Prompt: The goal of our final project is to create a sculpture or installation artwork to represent anything related to the Covid Pandemic. There is no limitation on materials.

The purpose of this project is to create a sculpture related to the Covid pandemic. During the school year of 2020 to 2021, I took a gap year because I did not want to take online classes. Therefore, after graduating high school, I went back to China, a place that I haven’t really explored ever since I came to the US for school in 7th grade. In this project, I expressed two aspects of Covid from my personal experience: communication and adaptivity. Being in a small town since middle school has really restrained my social life. I did not know many people other than people from my high school and surrounding towns. Although Covid shut down schools so I couldn’t even see these few people that I was friends with, I started socializing online and since other people’s schools also shut down, they were trying to socialize online too. I am really thankful for this experience as I came to know all my current closest friends during this period of time. Another important part of my covid experience was learning fortune-telling during my time in China. The Chinese ancient fortune-telling is based on Taoist ideologies, which practice spontaneity and tranquility and finding peace within the self. I experienced really hard times from anxiety growing up, and this learning experience not only taught me the skills of fortunetelling but also taught me how to calm my emotions through these Taoist ideologies. Fortune-telling also became a tool to socialize with other people, because friends would recommend me to their friends to do fortune readings, and I also made a really good amount of money along the way.