Our house is compromised in an obfuscated space 2020

My photo-based art practice stems from that personal experience, which I have moved or transferred among many different types of places and spaces since my childhood. In other words, I moved from a small town to Beijing, and then I moved to Wisconsin, Texas, and finally New York in the order. Those sudden changes of places prompt me to create a perfect space of both comforts and feelings of security in photographic space. Inspired by the French concept “flaneur”, I “flaneur” both in The New York Times virtually and on the space of NYC, and then I figure out my own philosophy. Confusing temporal and spatial relationships, all of my artwork is two-dimensional photographs, which are taken of photographic installations.

We are ready on the headshot photo backdrop 2020

We tried to paint a comfortable house by Chinese watercolor 2020

I call this series “Wallpapers” because it evokes the common practice forty years ago of pasting newspapers on the walls of one’s home, a handy and affordable solution for wallpaper in China. I am only using The New York Times due to The Times routinely reports what is happening within China and its website even has a Chinese language version. I use both online images and personal images to highlight subjectivity and objectivity. The newspapers are black/dark colors because I soaked in traditional Chinese watercolor ink before. The newspapers are yellow because I soaked in photographic developer before. Some of the work samples involving headshot and portrait due to I am expanding my practice with history and process of Chinese studio photography and U.S. visa photography including the backdrop scene.

Note: The text above was written by the Artist. No modification was made by COCA.

Jiawei Zhao

United States


Jiawei Zhao is a Chinese-born visual artist living and working in Brooklyn, NY. In 2018, Jiawei received his MFA Fine Arts degree from Pratt Institute. His work is in the collection of the Kala Art Institute, where he finished a residency in 2019. His work has been selected continuously for the 56th and then 57th Annual Juried exhibition at the Masur Museum of Art. Jiawei has recently participated in residencies at MASS MoCA and ChaNorth. He and his work are selected to participate in The Other Art Fair Brooklyn, which will be held in May 2020.

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