Slade School of Fine Art



Counting Blessings


Shen Xin

, 2014, digital video, 43:20.

Counting Blessings documents Shen's father's quest in searching the authentic images of the Tibetans. Deeply influenced by the Russian realist painters like Ilya Repin, the father sets the goal of his career to achieving realism through innovative Chinese ink practice, and depicting Tibetan is one of his main subject matters. In the film Shen conducted interviews around the photo archive the father keeps, and set out performative tasks for the father and his friends to complete, in order to further examine solely the aesthetic framework of his career. Hoping to activate multiple agonistic spaces, Shen goes on to include religious views of masculinity from visiting the Tibetan monks living in Vevey, Switzerland. The film also reveals Shen's reality in maintaining a paralleled practice in order to be financially self-sufficient and to obtain the privilege of western art education.


Snow Country


Shen Xin

, 2013, HD video, 18:24.

Snow Country is an attempt to look at the representation of trauma through cinematic space, more specifically, the trauma of women's bodies being violated, as individuals, and as the victims of Second World War. Comfort women are the term given to the women who were involved in the systematic structure of sexual slavery created by the Japanese military. The film was shot in Norway and Sweden, resonating with Yasunari Kawabata's novel with the same title.


Smiling Against Great Views


Shen Xin

, 2013, tourist attraction.

The Portrait is of a Chinese Government Official who caused an outcry on the Chinese Twitter-Weibo, by grinning at the scene of a bus crash, and has been given a 14-year jail sentence for corruption in September 2013. In attempt to transform the portrait of a Chinese Government Official into a tourist attraction in Olafsfjorour, a town in the northeast of Iceland whose economy has increasingly becoming dependent on tourism, Shen intends to insert a specific socio-political phenomenon, endeavouring to activate the network of its otherness. Shen has created tourist attraction website, and distributed postcards and posters that advertise the site in numerous public locations in Olafsfjorour.


Mitigating Circumstances / Episode 3 / Extras


Shen Xin

, 2013, video, performance, 04:37.

On the evening of April 16th 2013, the artist repetitively played a piece of music entitled 'Hallucination Makes Us Alive' by Zhou Yunpeng, a contemporary Chinese folk singer, at one of the places where retired citizens gather to dance daily after dinner. Having gained approval, two different groups of people danced to the music in which the lyrics depict the desire to linger in the state of drunkenness. Mitigating Circumstances is a series of three episodes that visually display the acts of self-organisation of an individual or of a collective group, and the acts' seemingly arbitrary relationships with human disasters and "bad news" that is circulating in social media. Each episode presents these relationships through different approaches including duration of spectating, video environment, and the intention of the artist.

Shen xin