I have tried to soak different papers for a loooong time, and yes, the emulsion falls of, but in a very, very messy way.
I've been told (or read - I don't remember), that he has invented a technique, where he - as Jnanian says - can lift of the intire negative as done in polaroid emulsion lifts..
One problem here, though: in many of his images, it looks like there are many (distorted) images, coming from the same negative...
He could have made many negative copies OR it could actually be a positive lift...
I honestly dont know, as he has never disclosed his technique...
But at the end of the day, he is a master in what he is doing!
Based on the description of the technique on his website, it sounds as if he's lifting the positive not the negative.
"The technique consists of transfer the exposed and fixed photographic emulsion from its original base on paper..."
A emulsion stripper was a person working in a pre press house that would put pages together and would lift the emulsion off transparancies and put them into the page layout on an other mylar. this composite would then be used along with the type and plates would be made for printing.
There probably are some people here who may have done this job.
So basically there's a way to get emulsions off of a negative?