We often think of cats as lazy, but Guodong Zhao‘s animals bring laziness to a new level. His animals, real or imagined convey a personality and in his lastest series the animals make an interesting commentary on technology.
Something about these animals transfixed by their phones or consoles is deeply striking and upsetting in a way that we’ve been desensitized to in human beings. These animals are quite clearly not at their best slouched on a bean bag concentrated on a screen rather than their surroundings.
I really like these two images of a polar bear on his phone. It makes me think of friends who are so attached to their phones that htey need them to enjoy a holiday. The bear is doing exactly the same in both images, it’s just the backdrop that changes. What was the point of him going on holiday if he’s still trapped in the same virtual world‽
A lot of Zhao’s work focuses on a character trying to reach a status equal to others but struggling to get there.
In this series of images two turtles mock their crushed friend but end up being crusehd themselves. I don’t know what the characters on the pillars read, but the feeling comes across clear. I imagine Zhao feels like the character’s being laughed at and this is his revenge.
Only in this image do we get a hope that others will help, yet I don’t think Zhao is hopeful, this man is attempting to help, but the statue is solid and the two behind who look like they are helping sit motionless.
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