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Ai Weiwei

China Born in: 1957 Famous artist

Born in 1957 in Beijing, Ai Weiwei is a multidisciplinary artist, sculptor, blogger, architect and curator. He studied cinema at the Beijing Film Academy and then attended Parsons School of Design in New York. The artist lived and worked in Beijing but has lived in the United States for many years. Indeed, at the beginning of the 1980's, he moved to New York to photograph scenes of daily life to capture the habits and lifestyles of its inhabitants. He returned to Beijing to pursue this practice in 1993. Through his work he attempts to paint a portrait of a country and its population by reflecting not only everyday life but also the mores and customs of societies. Weiwei is a major artist in the contemporary art scene. His works are vast, nonconformist and provocative, and this has led to repercussions. His arrest by the Chinese government in 2011 for tax evasion was more for his activism and critique of Chinese society. He has largely contributed to the evolution of the social reality of his country; his art is an account of his perception of the world and his concerns. He uses social media to voice his opinions by publishing photos and texts via Twitter or his blog, thus managing to reach a diffuse population with his numerous followers.

A politically engaged artist, he joined the avant-garde artists' collective “The Stars" in 1979 and promotes liberal values centred on freedom of expression, of man as an individual in his own right; thus opposing the Socialist Realism promoted by the State. He draws inspiration from artists such as Duchamp or Warhol, subversive artists who are known for their criticism of society, just like Weiwei.

He creates numerous sculptures from traditional objects from Chinese culture; porcelain vases or even Qing dynasty furniture in order to describe a dual society, divided between individualism and collectivism. He participated in the construction of China's national stadium, known as the 'Bird's Nest', for the 2008 Olympic Games.

Ai Weiwei's works have been exhibited in the US at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, in the UK, Belgium, Italy, Germany, France, Spain, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Australia, China, South Korea and in Japan at the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo.

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Our recommendations Ai Weiwei, Sculpture for The Public Art Fund, New York City, "Good Fences Make Good Neighbors" Project, Sculpture

Ai Weiwei

Sculpture for The Public Art Fund, New York City, "Good Fences Make Good Neighbors" Project, 2017
5 x 4 x 4 inch


Few works remaining by Ai Weiwei

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