Youjun Zhang

David: An Exhibitor

Class of: 2026

Major: Communication Design BFA

Medium: Mixed media montage booklet

Faculty: Wendy Letven

Prompt: In this project, students are supposed to make a series of mixed media montage by using the images found in the image collection in New York Public Library, and then use cut-off texts from articles to create poetry relates to the montage's theme. During the process, students will explore the use of Photoshop and Indesign. And the whole project should follow a theme that chose from the following five topics which are commodity, sanctuary, conspiracy, abnormal, and objectify.

War brings irreversible damage to human beings – their lives, humanity, culture, as well as the arts. Thousands of art masterpiece has been damaged and ruined severely during the war. Pillage and insane destruction exploded – colonialism, massacre, plague – the severest violence and inhumanity were exposed and expanded during the war, as those destructions were expressed as a form of anger and desperation. And it is such a conspiracy of human beings themselves that, not just a conspiracy to ignore the loss of art but also a conspiracy to escape from the cost of humanity in war, in which the voice from officials and society tends to let the public become senseless about those memories of violence and forget about how war can destroy human being’s kindness, beauty and moral. The final outcome is a 56 x 5 inches accordionfold booklet with fourteen pages in total made of mixed media, using photo paper and plotter printers in printing. And the topic I chose had hung in my heart for a long time yet I never dig very deeply into it before since I feel it is very difficult and harsh to really take a close look at all the details of wars. During the process of making montages – selecting different images, cropping subjects like weapons, fire, screaming mouths and desolate tombs from them, and placing them to make new layouts, I felt really strained and struggled in heart and mind. I consider the project to be the most challenging one this semester yet I also feel it is very worth to do it. From a perspective confronting these real faces of war is a necessary approach, in which then I could have a deeper understanding of it and try to make a change in the future.