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Senior Thesis Spotlight: Rucheng Zhou

Rucheng Zhou finds inspiration in books, films and religion. Inside the ambiguity of all of them is where her imagination takes off. She embraces familiar narratives and illustrates her perspective, often melding cultures and religious iconography and creating her own fantasy-based mythologies. Zhou was most inspired by The Divine Comedy by Dante when she was young. It formed her ideas of heaven and hell - of angels and monsters - of new worlds that she never before imagined. Zhou’s art now comes from her desire to establish these worlds - to situate her characters in believable, relevant and yet imaginative scenes inside complex and layered stories often revealed through a collision of different times, styles, colors and textures. The human form maintains an important role in Zhou’s work as she believes that figures, - from their gestures and facial expressions to their actions and clothes - can relay the most accurate of feelings to audiences. Zhou mainly uses painting and drawing with acrylic and watercolor.

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