Repairing the Parents


Photographs and digital drawing, 2021

Why do Chinese people generally experience transgenerational trauma? Why do Chinese parents rarely express love to their children? Since the founding of New China after emancipation, has the trauma experienced by each Chinese generation passed on through the family? People who have experienced trauma often express love in different ways . Intergenerational trauma in the family does not necessarily need to be experienced directly.

The process of completing my work is an effective way to treat trauma.

The work is developed from my standpoint. As the only child of the third generation in an ordinary Chinese family, I have made an independent depiction of my family’s memories. I painted each generation of family members, grandparents, parents, and cousins in the old gray photos on the same painting through computer drawing to become the same color. In this way, I expressed my desire for love in the family too. This work is also self-expression of myself.

I call this artwork ‘Repairing the Parents’. "Parents" not only represents my parents but every Chinese person who has become or will become a "parent." In Chinese families, Similar transgenerational trauma is common. I hope that more and more Chinese parents can be repaired and express love to their children without reservation. Chinese parents need to be "repaired."  Perhaps it is the transgenerational trauma that alters the ability to express love and feelings. Only by relieving such transgenerational trauma can more healthy, loving, and happy Chinese families emerge. The family is always the warmest harbor for a person after suffering an injury.

Goldsmiths MA Contemporary Art Theory 2021