Kingston University Communication Design MA

Jingyang Zeng

Hi! I am Jean Zeng, mainly based in Shanghai and London. I decided to pursue a career in graphic design after working as an engineer in water conservancy field for 6 years. Before I studied in Kingston School of Art, London, I did visual identity design, poster design and book design as a hobby. I am now exploring my way in moving images design, creative coding, data visualization and still maintain my passion on real materials and prints. As a practitioner standing between art and science, I am interested in looking for a way to combine what’s learnt in my past engineering experience with present research-oriented practices. With my working experience, I am also confident in detecting and solving problems for clients in any commercial project.

Visualisation of Cyberspace in Neuromancer

As the technique of brain-computer interface develops and human civilisation moves towards the future when brains can directly access the Internet, graphic design will expand its landscape when ‘visible’ brain-computer interfaces can be widely applied. This project is both a prophecy and a tribute to the iconic science fiction novel Neuromancer(Gibson,1984) which coined the term ‘cyberspace’. The video intends to predict a user-centred experience in cyberspace, which was envisioned in Neuromancer, but within today’s context. The most significant visual element ‘light reflection in a rod’ came from the optical fibre cables, which represent the materiality of today’s Internet. On the other hand, the quantitative contents ‘packets’ and ‘hops’ indicate the real structure of Internet. The distance in cyberspace is redefined as ‘delay time’ between two IP addresses. In addition, an imitation of ‘phosphene’ phenomenon is based on both a study of cognitive neuroscience of vision and the description of cyberspace in Neuromancer.

This static data graphic is a pure quantitative expression of the data I’ve collected: the delay time between the user and these popular websites. Strictly following similar triangles theory, the bigger spot means less delay time, which equals to smaller distance between the user and the website server. The ‘theory of data graphics’ in The visual display of quantitative information (Tufte, 2001) was taken as an important guideline when modifying this work piece.

As another path of data visualisation, this work piece is a typical example of those ‘dataesthetic’ works described in Data Flow 2 (Klaten, 2010) as ‘not to inform’, but to use data as materials. The ‘material’ I used in this picture was exactly the same data set used in the other static graphic. The palette demonstrates my personal taste. The colours are changing under certain regulation, but with no scientific meaning. Although this work piece can tell no practical, specific information, it is possible that our real super overwhelming information-overloaded cyberspace looks much more chaotic than this.


Cyberspace / light reflection / phosphene


Email: zeng_jing_yang@hotmail.com
Instagram: @jean_zeng
Behance: Jean Zeng
Youtube: Jingyang Zeng

Kingston School of Art, Kingston University
MA Communication Design: Graphic Design 2020/2021


In collaboration with
London Design Festival

Exhibition team
Anna Kehrer / Ells Flynn / Zeina Boukhaled

Jiani Liao

Abhimanyu Bhatia / Alberto Ajelli / Liz Huang

Special thanks to
Claudia Chiavazza / Chang Liu / Yangyang Wu / Yifan Wu / Lucy-May Turner / Yongxin Bai

Andrew Haslam / Cathy Gale / Max Ryan / Naho Matsuda / Tao Lin