‘the keyboard of isolation‘ by jody xiong of DDB china, 2011 the installation as viewed in an IT shopping mall all images courtesy the artist

‘the keyboard of isolation’ is an installation by jody xiong of the creative agency ddb china, created on behalf of the family care for grassroots community in shanghai, china. the piece was designed to raise awareness of the issues developed from china’s new-found infatuation with the online world. ‘the keyboard of isolation’ is built from several hand-crafted human figurines sealed away in glass containers in the shape of a 5 meter long keyboard displayed with the tagline, ‘go online and family is isolated’.

the piece pictures thirty-six families recreated as 9 centimeter figurines inhabiting isolated bubbles, separated into 115 keys as a result of their computer addictions. as families grow more and more dependent on computers to communicate, family care for grassroots community sought to help half a billion chinese net-citizens to realize how and why computers are becoming a point of contention within families and communities.

‘the keyboard of isolation’ traveled for over two months, beginning in an IT mall and ending in a public square. over the course of the installation’s movement around shanghai, an estimated 1,800,000 individuals had the opportunity to view the massive keyboard composed of figurines either overusing or being affected by the excessive use of technological devices sealed within glass jars of various sizes. this installation features an interesting dichotomy between handcrafted artistry encapsulated within a physical structure that immediately evokes a computer keyboard.

xiong’s environmental installation is now on show at zendai MOMA in shanghai, china.

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china the installed piece in its entirety

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china one figurine component being placed within one of the glass-formed keys

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china a detailed perspective of the finished piece

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china an artisan works on one of the miniature keyboard characters

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china several of the isolated figurines prior to decoration

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china a descriptive panel near the piece explaining the intention of the artists

the keyboard of isolation by jody xiong of DDB china compiled informative diagram provided by the artist

‘the keyboard of isolation’

project info:

client: family care for grass roots community creative director: jody xiong copywriter: jody xiong, leo liu art director: jody xiong, willian zhang, jack xuan designer: jody xiong photographer: nicolas siau illustrator: jody xiong typographer: jody xiong photographer: king zhang, alex chen