Chinese multimedia artist who has lived in Rome from the age of eight and studied between London and Paris with degrees in Political Science and Economics, Yi Zhou is a polyglot artist whose videos has been shown at Shanghai Biennale, Venice Biennale Sundance Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival. Like Andy Warhol at his time, her work is also recognised by members of highly diverse social circles such as distinguished intellectuals, Hollywood celebrities and wealthy patrons and young social media audience.
In the past years, Yi Zhou has been endorsing a number of global campaigns ranging from Persol in 2012, DFS T-Galleria in 2015 and Levi’s in 2016. Yi Zhou was named as the first ever artist-ambassador to endorse a beauty brand for China: Clarins, from 2010 to 2011. Loved by luxury brands for her multi-disciplinary range as an artist filmmaker and influencer, since 2011 she has also started collaborations with brands such as Chanel, Hogan, Pringle of Scotland, Lane Crawford, Yoox.
Her diverse interests and capacity to range her multimedia work have also been shown through her much-acclaimed collaborations such as with the French couture jewellery house Gripoix: a first successful artist-collection entitled “Pineapple’s Secret”. Her animations have also inspired clothing collection by the French hip brand, Each x Other.
In 2013, Yi Zhou has also been invited as the very first Chinese talent to be hired as a designer and creative director of a brand to do a 360 degree project ranging from men’s wear, women’s wear and accessories for Italian luxury brand Iceberg. “Breaking the Ice” capsule collection was released in December 2013 world wide.
Since 2010 she has relocated back to China and founded her creative strategy digital production company in Shanghai and HongKong www.yizhoustudio.com creating job opportunities for young Chinese people to work and experiment together on international projects. An image maker and muse, switching from the front to the back of the camera, Yi Zhou is a modern-day Chinese Hitchcock, Yoko Ono and Cindy Sherman.
An active influencer on the digital world, Yi Zhou has been named Tudou.com’s (Chinese would-be youtube) art-director, art and fashion advisory member at Sina.com (which owns Chinese twitter, weibo), and named as beauty & fashion icon ambassador for Tencent (which also owns Wechat).
If Yi Zhou’s work is not pop, the life she has been embracing reminds of Andy Warhol’s philosophy: establishing her work as leading video artist, ranging her works from 3D animations to sculptures, music composition, filmmaking, acting as active promoter of East meets West culture by being a public speaker at key leading events such as TEDx (Paris in 2012 and Beijing in 2013 and Zhejiang in 2014), Women’s Forum selected as Rising Talent in 2012, LVMH labour day in Paris in 2013, Financial Times Luxury Conference in 2014.
YiZhou has contributed to many NGOs by creating art pieces for the UN conference for the World Climate Change in South Africa in 2011 and the UNDP China Rio+20 project in 2012, as well as world ocean’s day with a short animated piece inspired by the Unesco’s heritage list in 2015.
在过去的几年中，周依受到全球诸多知名品牌的合作要求，2012年与意大利太阳镜品牌Persol合作成为品牌的广告形象代言人，2015年与DFS T-Gallieria，以及2016年与Levi’s的合作成为品牌的广告形象代言人。2010年至2011年周依被娇韵诗选为艺术家代言人，同时也成为第一位美容品牌的艺术家代言人。周依作为艺术家拥有广泛的领域涉及的特点使她受到奢侈品牌的喜爱。从2012年起，她开始和品牌进行合作，比如香奈儿(Chanel)，意大利品牌Hogan，Pringle of Scotland, 连卡佛(Lane Crawford), YOOX等。
周依多样化的兴趣以及能力还体现在与法国高级定制珠宝品牌Gripoix的合作当中，即首次颇受好评的艺术家Capsule合作首饰系列“菠萝密” （Pineapple’s Secret）。她的动画还成为法国潮牌Each x Other服饰系列的灵感来源。
2013年，周依受邀成为第一个被品牌聘用担任设计师及创意指导的中国艺术家，与意大利奢侈品牌“Iceberg冰山”推出最新合作项目：由周依设计并署名的—— “破冰 (Breaking the Ice) ”服饰系列, 360度地展现了包括男装、女装、配件等产品。该系列于2013年12月全球推出。
周依从2010年起重新回到中国，并在上海和香港建立了自己的工作室（可参阅www.yizhoustudio.com） 及制作公司，为中国的年轻人创造一起工作及实践的机会，共同参与国际化项目。周依是一位影像的创作者及缪斯，穿梭于台前幕后，堪称当代中国版希区柯克(Hitchcock)、小野洋子(Yoko One)及辛蒂·雪曼(Cindy Sherman)的混合体。作为多媒体艺术界的活跃分子以及具有一定影响力的公众人物，周依担任了土豆网（中国未来的Youtube网站）艺术总监，同时也是新浪网、新浪微博的时尚艺术顾问，以及腾讯网（微信）的美容和形象大使。
周依的生活会让人想起Andy Warhol的哲学：以领先的影像艺术家开始建立作品，并延伸到雕塑，音乐创作，电影拍摄，像一个积极倡导者一样， TEDx进行演讲演讲（2012年于巴黎，2013年于北京，2014年于浙江），2012年被世界女性经济与社会论坛选为新兴人才，2013年LVMH劳动节及2014年金融时报聚豪会议等公开演讲上，倡导了自己对于东西方文化碰撞与结合的观念。同时周依也致力于通过创作不同的作品为世界上不同的组织伸出援手，其中包括了2011年联合国组织在南非世界气候峰会上，以及2012年联合国开发计划署中国里约+20项目以及2015年世界海洋日以联合国教科文组织非政府组织遗产名录为灵感的一个简短的动画。
“Art is a hope for happiness,” said Baudelaire. The total art of Yi Zhou is the demonstration of the Chinese artist’s desire to represent the depth and the surface of things, the appearances of the world and the deep pulsations that pass through the human mind. Her work is the fruit of a multimedia language that combines cinema, digital animation, photography, sculpture, painting, drawing and contemporary music. In this way, even through video, the work becomes the ability to represent time in space, to capture the fleeting moments of life in a fragmentary vision that succeeds in capturing the present without forgetting the past, in a dialogue between different cultures, between East and West. A sophisticated and surprising literary memory enables Yi Zhou to create references to the “Divine Comedy” by Dante Alighieri, to the “Decameron” by Boccaccio, to the story of Nastagio degli Onesti, and even to recover the comedy of Gogol’s “The Nose”. These references are successfully absorbed by a visual language that grasps the idea of the plot (completely western) interwoven with a flowing concept of circular time (completely oriental). The four films that Yi Zhou presents in Venice document the precocious maturity of a cosmopolitan artist who has explored many cultural and poetic genres that are quite far from one another, such as that of Nam June Paik and Andy Warhol, American cinema and the French Nouvelle Vague, Italian design and Asiatic statue production. These interweaving capacities demonstrate the eroticism of a work that finds the confirmation of an idea of total art in the synthesis of languages. Which means the representation of a value that is very suited to our time, namely the coexistence of differences.
Yi Zhou embraces the full range of visual and audio experiences available to new media art, she takes on new scientific products, and weaves unabashedly into her work celebrity glamour and cinematic spectacle. We are reminded by Yi that our age is equidistant between Homeric epic and mass media Hollywood, and that we are equally at home with karaoke sentimentality and state-sponsored terror. With the modern alchemy of media technology, the artist can touch any familiar objects with magic, and any present moment can be a moment of adventure.
Yi's fantasies are gilded by a lunar aura, they recede into a mythical distance that constantly wakes up to the fragility of the physical body. She is fascinated by epic tales, to which she responds and imagines as bodily transformation (of heart, ear, head and inner organs). Immersing into herself as the source of adventure, she cracks the present moment to open up an abyss of mythic time. Adolescent innocence and vain glory, cosmic dream and virtual reality, heroic epoch and soap sentiment, Yi has created fresh scope for imagination by bringing all of these on stage.