Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire

Siyuan Xu 

BA [Hons] Animation

Siyuan is a Chinese-Irish Illustrator, Designer and Writer. Their final year focus centres on oppositional film-making and synthesising the stylishness of contemporary East-Asian cinema into their final film and thesis; Inspired by experimental cinematography and precise imagery in communicating the mental landscape and socio-political subtext. Featured is work and stills from final film, 'WHITE LOBSTER,' a visual expression of the inarticulate aftermath of trauma. Siyuan's focus areas lie in layouts, character and background design.


'WHITE LOBSTER' is an eclectic short film revolving around a surreal experimental-narrative exploring the thin line between psyche and disorder. The use of limited animation is purposeful in supporting graphic visual storytelling and grounding the atmospheres of the mental and physical landscape.

Cute, Cool and Criminal: Transgressive Gender Representation in Film by Japanese Schoolgirl Subcultures

The salience of subcultural studies identifies flaws in the dominant culture’s ability to care for the individual; a subculture may be considered a product of the social order’s structural flaws. Joanne Turney dissects the codification of particular articles of clothing labelled as ‘criminal,’ and explains ‘dress’ as culturally loaded: Communicating ‘something about the self either as projection or as reflection,’ pertaining to clothing as a ‘vehicle in which to perform the self (real or perceived).’ Western subcultural patterns are accepted to be male-lead and orientated with female participants taking supporting roles. So, are all counter-cultural artefacts of dress limited to the semiotics of masculine punk, rock, and/or hip-hop? This thesis offers Japan as irrefutable evidence of an alternate and overlooked subcultural pattern and producer of a new global outlaw archetype, the unlikely anti-heroine: Schoolgirls. Japan’s girl-centred subcultures fundamentally challenge prescribed gendered behaviour/speech and sexual/familial roles, this thesis discusses transgressive gender representation of teenage girls in film and the dissemination of a new global archetype through the motif of the seifuku (uniform).