When music went digital and shed most of its physical limitations, a lot of visual culture was lost with it. But the need to break through the noise on social media now pushes musicians to cultivate a visual presence. Taiwanese artist EG Huang’s work is native to this new ephemeral world. His graphic design, typography, and 3D art is mainly created for musicians, and his early interest in digital art was directly inspired by the growth of social media. The result of this influence is a style brimming with chaotic energy, a visual overload with a metallic sheen and neon colors, all bathed in jagged textures and unusual type design.
当音乐在数字化的道路上越走越远，实体早已不再是限制。随之到来的，则是大量视觉要素的消失。不过当下，不少音乐人正尝试利用醒目的视觉在社交媒体斩获大批眼球。台湾艺术家 EG Huang 的作品便诞生在这样的大环境下。他的大部分平面设计、字体设计和 3D 艺术作品都是为音乐量身打造，而他最初对数字艺术的兴趣也是来自社交媒体的启发。他的作品仿佛往往自带混乱的磁场，藉由金属质感与霓虹色彩的交织，带给观众一种“视觉过载”的感受，以锯齿般的纹理和怪异的字体设计联合呈现。
During high school, Huang created zines populated by his own illustrations related to skateboarding, movies, and music. “It was like a diary for my life,” he says. To improve his zines, he began experimenting with font design and typography, a trajectory that eventually led him to study graphic design at university. With the rise of social media in the past decade, he found a deluge of visual material to draw inspiration from. Suddenly the whole world was visible and he saw the digital ether as a space to collect the things that he loved, reinterpreting them through his own style. It was like a new version of the zine to him, only now it was available instantly worldwide.
But of course, for all the possibilities created by social media, the challenges are undeniable. “It can definitely affect your mental health and it’s changed me personally, so I try to include this in my work,” Huang says. “It’s like a feedback loop, creating art for and about the internet.” This paradox and sense of agitation is often visualized in his work, resulting in an aesthetic that feels jagged and cluttered, with images often unclear and difficult to discern. There’s an undeniable angst too, visualized through scrapes and scratches, the serrated edges covered in splashes of ink.
社交媒体这个熔炉拥有无的可能性，但同样为 EG 的创作带来挑战。他解释道：“毋庸置疑，社交媒体影响并改变了你我的心理，我想将这些改变统统融入进我的作品。我的创作就像一个反馈环，一切取材于互联网，又在网上流传。”这种悖论和混乱感经常在他的作品中被可视化，呈现出一种参差不齐和杂乱无章的美学风格，整个画面看上去模糊不清，难以辨别。除此之外，作品中的划痕以及溅上墨水的锯齿状边缘令画面透露出一股难以忽视的焦虑。
Like the zines of his youth, Huang’s designs still have a collage feel, with images stripped from one context and layered over another. “I love mixing things with no connection to create something new,” he explains. They’re often literal collages that he scans into his pieces but sometimes the collage effect is created in Photoshop.
和他年轻时所创作的电子杂志一样，EG 的作品依然延续着拼贴画风格，各种设计元素通过叠加与组合，揉捏在一起。“我喜欢把毫无关联的元素糅合在一起，创造出全新的视觉，”他解释道。大部分时候，他都会先裁剪图片，然后扫描并组成拼贴作品，或是用 Photoshop 来创建拼贴画效果。
While flyers and album art are meant to advertise the music, Huang’s typography is often less about legibility than aesthetic effect. It’s partially influenced by death metal logo design and chromatic textures that are in vogue at the moment, but Huang also utilizes East Asian calligraphy and other less easily recognizable forms. Take for example, a flyer for Taipei nightclub Final, a vicious, deconstructed face of the alien warrior from Predator is surrounded by blood red cursive script Chinese calligraphy.
As a digital artist inspired by the internet and electronic music, Huang’s work is unsurprisingly futuristic. The glint of metallic material, the holographic and ultraviolet colors, distant nebula clouds, and infinite tangles of computer wiring are everywhere. His designs are a window into a new dimension, a liminal space neither here nor there, with no tangible form but undeniably real.
作为深受互联网和电子音乐启发的数字艺术家，毫不意外，EG Huang 的作品充满了未来主义感，这一点从无处不在的锃亮的金属材料、全息影像效果、紫外光色调、遥远的星云以及无限纠缠的电脑线路可见一斑。他的作品为观众开启了一扇通往新世界的窗口，一个独立的临界空间，像是一种来源于现实，又触摸不到的虚拟。