This is a most fascinating artist, man, humanitarian! I really enjoyed learing about his work and thought you would enjoy learing about him as well.
Ai Weiwei is China’s most famous international artist, and its most outspoken domestic critic. Against a backdrop of strict censorship and an unresponsive legal system, Ai expresses himself and organizes people through art and social media. In response, Chinese authorities have shut down his blog, beat him up, bulldozed his newly built studio, and held him in secret detention.
Ai Weiwei was born in Beijing, China in 1957. An outspoken human rights activist, Ai was arrested by Chinese authorities in April 2011 and held incommunicado for three months.
Upon his release, he was prohibited from traveling abroad, engaging in public speech, and was subjected to continued government surveillance. Ai’s position as a provocateur and
dissident artist informs the tenor and reception of much of his recent work. He infuses his sculptures, photographs, and public artworks with political conviction and personal poetry,
uses reclaimed materials—ancient pottery and wood from destroyed temples —in a conceptual gesture that connects tradition with contemporary social concerns. He also employs sarcasm,
juxtaposition, and repetition to reinvigorate the potency and symbolism of traditional images and to reframe the familiar with minimal means. A writer and curator, Ai extends his practice
Beijing Film Academy and the Parsons School of Design in New York.
When I read his awards of acheivments and acoomplishments and was totally blown away. can you imagine all of this acclaim and he can’t get out.
He has received an honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Politics and Social Science, University of Ghent, Belgium (2010), as well as many awards, including the
Skowhegan Medal (2011) and the Chinese Contemporary Art Award (2008). His work has appeared in major exhibitions at Kunsthaus Bregenz (2011); the Victoria & Albert Museum,
and Documenta XII (2007). Ai Weiwei lives and works in Beijing, China.