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Print (MA)

Jiaqi Mao

Jiaqi Mao, b.2000, China

She lives and works in London, Nanjing and New York.

Her practice is multi-disciplinary, taking in filming, printmaking, drawing and photography.


2019 - 2022: BA Fine Art 4D (Moving Image), Central Saint Martins, UAL, London

2022 - 2023: MA Print, Royal College of Art, London


2021. 1

“A is A, A is not A” , group online virtual exhibition, which was modeled by James Riley. Every member designed their own showroom. I was also responsible for the publicity of the work in China.

2021. 8

“Drive” exhibition , in Shanghai, exhibited with 6 artists, as its title suggests, the exhibition explores the drive unleashed by the vacillation between the internal desire of becoming ourselves and the desire imposed by others.

Degree Details

School of Arts & HumanitiesPrint (MA)RCA2023 at Battersea and Kensington

RCA Battersea, Dyson Building, First floor


I first tried out the medium of printmaking by chance during the pandemic. Due to the constraints, I was only able to try the drypoint etching. Drypoint is a very laborious way of working. At some times, it is even unthinking and repetitive labour. This practice appeals to me, perhaps because of the farming life that is rooted in my family tradition. My maternal grandmother did hard work all her life and my mother experienced a life of heavy labour as a child, and after my mother had worked her way up to become a university professor, she reserved her spare time for gardening, at which point the act turned into a hobby for her. Under the influence of my grandmother and mother, I became a member of a younger generation who loved farming in the midst of contemporary urbanised life. When I was engaged in the tedious, repetitive and extremely tiring task of farming, my mind went into a state where I could only see the goal in front of me. Performing this seemingly meaningless and repetitive activity of reliving certain painful experiences and experiences over and over again is a strange cycle that the women in my family fall into. I realised that my female elders and I were engaged in a long period of female self-persecution.

Based on my grandma’s hardships of the past 70 to 80 years and her regrets and helplessness, I completed a documentary focusing on the abandoned "minority" in a fast-moving society in order to delve into the clash between modern and traditional culture. The documentary's bland and dull domestic scenes amplify the silence of my grandmother and hint at protest against patriarchy, role segregation and female subordination. With the work accompanying my mother in farming, I started to find my grandmother's shadow in her. Three generations of women, my grandma, mom, and I, share the softness, stubbornness, and resilience that transcend time and space. The ancient historical nature of printmaking carries with it calmness and quietness, as do women in my family. Engraving prints echo my grandmother's decades of breathless heavy farm work. Carving is a general act of invasion, an invasion no different from those Chinese women borne in the past centuries. Etching also has a special value in the contemporary context. At a time when all media are seeking to convey meanings more rapidly, etching is like an anomaly, forcing one to focus on the medium itself. Borrowing from the old printmaking form, I transformed my grandma into the main character of my work, creating an animation that starts from a completely female perspective. The short film is a stop-motion animation that presents an eerie but realistic story in monochrome.

A little girl in a field.
Launch Project
A woman sewing.


Printmaking, animation
Launch Project