Generative arts, VR

Cage is a digital collage to keep memories of the past tragedies about domestic violence towards females in China, including a generative poster (1.0) and the VR work (2.0).

Cage 1.0

From social media including Weibo, I collected hundreds of comments under the recent news about domestic violence towards females. Social awareness and comments are like string and web that connect to the fate of Chinese women. I choose to visualize these connections and the pressure towards them.


Last November, A Chinese beauty vlogger Yuya’s claims of suffering domestic violence have reignited conversations about whether enough is being done to help victims. Meanwhile, Chinese Actor Jiang Jinfu Jiang Accused of Domestic Violence Again, after admitting to the abuse toward his ex-girlfriend in 2018. In December, The suicide of a Peking University student, reportedly following prolonged psychological abuse from her boyfriend who was annoyed with the fact that she was not a virgin, prompted heated discussions on Chinese social media over the mental health among couples and families.

The frequent heat is not occasional. 30% of China's married women have suffered some form of domestic violence. It took Yuya, someone with a certain degree of social power and wits, to suffer five cases of abuse before she went public, so we can imagine how many more ordinary Chinese women are choosing to suffer in silence. Even worldwide, according to the data of the United Nations, only 40% of the female victims in domestic violence choose to call the police. The pressure from public, family, and culture made them become unseen-victim.

Visual development

I took a reference from Chiharu Shiota, a Japanese installation artist. Mostly renowned for her vast, room-spanning webs of threads or hoses, she links abstract networks with concrete everyday objects such as keys, windows, dresses, shoes, boats and suitcases. Her art language expresses the intangible: memories, anxiety, silence and more, which correspond to my concept of “hurt and pressure”.


I use web scraper to collect the comments from Sina news and Sina weibo. Including the sub-comments(comments towards comments), the total number is over 5000. To process better in the visual work, I only showed hundreds of main comments.
On the other hand, I pixelate the screenshot from Yuya's released video. The 3D blocks can be controlled and scatter through the whole page.

Cage 2.0

Cage 2.0 is the further version of previous work. During the work before, I feel the limitation of still images. What I want to do is calling for attention, especially from Chineses whom is not familiar with or far from those tragedies, like unmarried males and single females. Thus I start to create the VR version of Cage.

Re-design in VR

I want the people who stay outside the violence get into the virtual environment. In immersive experience, the news, the trauma and the comments become touchable. In the comments I collect, I found offensive words like “some women deserve violence”. I want the audience faced with the hurts in an abstract way.

The audience can grab, read and throw away the hurting comments to protect the woman, or,  further traumatize her by throwing the block toward her. They can also walk around the space to get a closer look at the red comments.

Visual design

I want to make the female figure vulnerable  “anonymous”, which means it could be regarded as a general symbol for women. The female statue is hard to see, covered by the scattered words questioning the innocence of the victims.  This reflects a fact in China society: the voice of females who got hurt in domestic violence is always pressed in the patriarchal society.

Futher development

I didn’t find the way to turn CSV file including the comments data into 3d models in Unity with scripts, so I did that manually. In the future I would like to load real-time comments about domestic violence from social media, turning the piece strongly connected to the online discussion.

Thank you for seeing this.