Untitled moods

Resin, acrylic

Manchester School of Art -MA Show 2018


In the drawer, 33 pieces of slides with different colours was shown with an observation book and a pencil. On the desktop there is a ‘microscope’ made by acrylic. Audiences are invited to open the drawer and pick a slide to observe under the lens of ‘microscope’. During this process, any thoughts or memories can be recorded down on the observation book. 

 ‘In one’s view, everything is in his/her colour’

----Wang Guowei 


This work is a recording of the sky observation, and also a process of how I got along with my moods. Be away from my family, I’ve lived abroad with myself as a first time, for more than one year. In an alien environment, any kind of mood will be magnified. I started to look for my own way to deal with it. Unconsciously, I found I’ve taken so many photos of the sky, a transparent sky, a foggy sky, a damask sunset, or a sapphire blue sky after the sun fell. They gave me different feelings and some could always remind me of that moment I met them. I like using phrases which are used to describe the sky as the metaphor for the mood. There are many similarities between them: they both envelop us and influence us in a different way; they are significant but often easily be ignored; also they are changeable, sometimes clear like after washed, sometimes grey, or even dark. The sky also can influence our emotion. More accurately, it doesn’t influence us exactly. It ‘reminds’ us of the mood and ‘ferments’ it. I started to write sky observation dairy, to describe the sky and my mood at that time. During this time, I observed the changing of the mood more carefully. I communicated with myself through the sky and treat my perceptual moments in a rational way. 


I extracted the colours from different types of the sky and arranged them in transverse layers. More colours I collected, more harmony the colour collections showed. The sky exists objectively, but depending on the different view, time, context, the sky we caught is influenced the ‘colour’ of ourselves. Schopenhauer stated the perceiver will influence the world. Through different people’s eye, the world is different because it’s influenced by our ‘colours’, such as our character, our own experience. This collection can be seen as my ‘colours’. And my consciousness was compressed and stored in these colour square, like compact discs.


The resin was the main material in my work. I’m obsessed with the regular changing and the random texture, just like the changeable sky. On the contrast, I made the uniform slides by clear acrylic to hold the colours. Slides are usually used in a science experiment to hold the specimen for observing through the microscope. On each slide, there is a serial number printed by laser cutting technique. A serious and scientific attitude was added to the act of observing and organizing my moods.


Be surrounded by these colours I caught with my memory and mood, I felt I was healed all the time. When I looked back, it was like a collection of my moods in a certain period. I was asked which is the happy mood or the sad mood, but I don’t think the emotion of human being can easily be classified in a simple word. Therefore I named my work ‘Untitled moods’ because they are indefinable related to my personal memory and experience. I’d like to use the colour instead of the word to present my moods and share the process of how the sky reflected it and healed me. 


 © 2018 by Sheng Chenni    

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