Rear Window

Zhiran Gu

From one morning in mid April, I sat in front of my window, like Jeffries in Rear window (1954), capturing passengers in the backstreet. In addition to the observation of how people respond to the Coronavirus (COVID 19) pandemic, there is also an attempt to explore surveillance, visual power, social control and the relations among the three.

The project consists of window-framed photographs accompanied with Chinese character “正”. This method of tally mark helped me to approximately analyze the specific time intervals when more people would appear outside. However, I gradually became aware of that I positioned myself as a protector or even an overseer/ monitor in this area, suggesting a form of surveillance that is inherent to social control.

Artist biography

Zhiran Gu, b. 1997, Shanghai, China

Since had her first camera phone at the age of 15, Zhiran got used it to capture fragment moments in her life. And Photography gradually helps to explore a new way to face the world where images have been becoming one of the most permanent visualized ways of representation.

Zhiran studied BA Journalism in Shanghai University of Sports (2015-2019) and made a printed book Luwa as her graduation project, documenting the two-year reconstruction process of Former KMT Municipal Office Building of Shanghai. She currently lives in London, UK as a Master student of Photojournalism and Documentary photography at th