A Collaborative work made by Karl Patric Näsman & Shanghai-based artist Jiang Weitao in Shanghai, China March 2015. Assembled and exhibited at the Konstfack Spring Show 2015, Stockholm, Sweden.
Extract from the text in Fredrik Roos Stipendium 2016 catalogue written by Ellen Suneson, art curator based in Malmö, Sweden.
“In his project Shanghai Pearl Market (2015), Näsman collaborated with Shanghai-based artist Jiang Weitao in an examination of the shanzhai phenomenon in relation to older traditions of copying, and to their own artist role. The project involved creating an imitation together. Initially, they agreed to explore an older technique used to imitate materials such as marble or granite. Spreading canvases on the studio floor, they used a form of splash painting to create the imitation. The manual process was performed individually, but they communicated with each other while working on it, to achieve a surface of layers of tiny, multicoloured flecks of paint. The relationship between the different shades builds an image that gives the illusion of a colourful stone material. This collaboration between the two artists can be compared to the production process at the Chinese art reproduction factories, where several artists are usually involved in creating the replica, in order to achieve maximum efficiency while maintaining a high standard of workmanship. Although Näsman and Weitao were using the same technique, they interpreted it differently. Their difference in style reveals the fact that imitating a work of art is not mass production but craftsmanship, performed by human hands.”
Extract from ‘The copy of a copy of a copy’ by Thomas Elovsson Lector, Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Designs
“When Karl Patric Näsman goes to China to produce copies of Swedish splash painting, he chooses to collaborate with a contemporary Chinese artist, Jiang Weitao. Based on Näsman’s instructions, he and Jiang Weitao together produced several metres of splash-painted linen canvas, which Näsman then brought back to Sweden to mount on stretchers and present as paintings. In the work Shanghai Pearl Market, the canvas is stretched on a specially-made room divider. Here, the painting is transferred from its “natural” place as a painting on a wall, to a piece of furniture with a specific purpose. The painting has been turned into a utility object, but Näsman chooses to let it remain in the art context, and it becomes a form of free-standing sculptural object in the room. Together with this folding screen, Näsman shows another manifestation of the same splash technique, this time as mounted, wall-hung paintings. The same painting presents itself in two entirely different ways. Splash painting is now a kit that can be used in a variety of ways – as object, painting, design.”