Inspired by the innovation of conceptual artists Jeremy Deller and Joseph Kosuth, animated filmmaker Satoshi Kon, and musical artist Sun Ra, Shanghai-based designer Scene Peng mines for the unorthodox as she explores alternative lines of reasoning. “I believe it’s important to notice things unrelated to my subject,” she explains. “To remain inspired, I [probe] daily matters that are extraneous and existential yet investigative.” An experimental creative from the beginning, Peng honed her design skills in creating posters and merchandise while attending high school in Changsha, China, and Vancouver, Canada; she then went on to attend the university Central Saint Martins in London. While there, Peng designed the 2020 graduate show with fellow designer Julia Luckmann, a collaborator with whom she founded the remotely located design firm In Good Company (IGC). “Inside the industry, I have always dreamt of a milieu, a multipersona, a collective, a corporation of modern craftsman,” she says. “IGC isn’t limited to physical space, encouraging us to embrace and develop our practices together.” Peng’s approach involves combining lateral thinking with pragmatic crafting. “[I] keep a space open for myself and any possible collaborators to work into—some pure, honest space,” she says. “I’ve also found out that learning and testing new media will activate many simultaneous ideas and unconventional intuitions. Those moments are so beautiful and honest—I’m very addicted to it.”
The intimate portraits of this Toronto-based photographer often highlight underrepresented populations in media.