2021, Sterling silver, fine silver, gold foil, crystal, 100 x 6 x 5 cm, photo credit to Chen Ziyuan
“Rebuilding the Verification of Existence records my progress from the solitude of the Covid pandemic towards self-acceptance. In this process, I witnessed myself in various states of social distress. Limited activity, social distance and extended time spent alone led to anxiety, loneliness, fear, and confusion. In this society, being vulnerable, sentimental and authentic seems to be wrong. Those concentrated depressing emotions illustrate an image of myself that I have never seen before, and introduce me to the importance of self-acceptance. This thesis has become an act of self-improvement. I do not want to fight against these negative emotions; but rather, as in Eastern philosophy, I want to move with the resistance; to go with the flow.
The ‘self’ in this collection includes not only me but also other people in similar situations. By touching on these negative feelings, we ground ourselves in the world, assuring ourselves that we can exist in different ways. It also explores who we are and where we belong.”
Xiaoqing Rong was born and raised in Beijing, China. She has received the B.F.A. in jewelry from Pratt Institute with a minor in fashion design. During her senior year of study the Covid outbreak spread across the world. This crisis deeply influenced her practice which started to focus on negative emotions and self-acceptance. Through her work, she visualized vulnerability and sensitivity. In her recent collection, Rebuilding the verification of existence, she reconstructs life’s details and objects, through construction and deconstruction. The depression, anger, and anxiety might disappear within time, but her process of expression and acceptance has become an irreplaceable core.