Qian Yuan

MA work

∞_Independent Publishing in China

Independent publishing means niche publishing that stands outside of the mainstream publishing system and market. Recent years have seen a bunch of micro independent publishing organisations come into being in China. Spreading all over the country, these publishers have strong capabilities and the creative thinking ability; they put out many books with interesting characters for a small group of readers. Those books are distinct from formal publications in terms of content and form, existing as a brilliant complement for mainstream publishing market. However, under the provisions of Chinese laws, individuals or private organisations don’t have the right to publish books. In this sense, independent publishing could be said to be illegal. Nonetheless, there are still people who are enthusiastic about independent publishing and are clinging to their dreams. With respect and curiosity, I visited Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou and Ningbo from the end of 2015 to the beginning of 2016, interviewed many independent publishers in China. The final results for this project are a documentary film, publications and interactive banners with sound. 

The symbol “∞” means something without any bound. I named this project “∞” is because I want to express the hope that publishing should not have any border and should not be bound.


  • MA Degree


    School of Communication


    MA Visual Communication, 2016

  • I am a graphic designer and an independent publisher from China. I enjoy all kinds of aspects of art and design, and am always willing to learn more.

  • Degrees

  • BA Animation, Nanjing University of the Arts, China, 2011; BA Graphic Design, Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, 2014; MA Visual Communication, The Royal College of Art, 2016
  • Experience

  • Conde Nast UK_GQ Magazine, Internship, London, 2014; Type Tasting Studio, Internship, London, 2013
  • Exhibitions

  • EXILE, Exhibition by Made in Arts London, London, UK, 2013; Creative London, Typography Exhibition in London Design Festival, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK, 2013; Show Us Your Type, Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, London, UK, 2013; The Point, Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design BA Degree Show, London, UK, 2014; UK Chinese Student Design Show, China Design Centre, London, UK, 2014; Show 2016: The Royal College of Art Graduation Exhibition, London, UK, 2016
  • Awards

  • Conde Nast UK Magazine App Design Competition, One of Two Finalists, 2014; Fabriano Italy Watermark Design Competition, Overall Winner, 2013