Who is the chinese artist Ai Weiwei ?
Ai Weiwei was born in 1957 in Beijing. This iconoclastic Chinese artist studied animation at the Beijing Film Academy, which he joined in 1978, and then at the Parsons School of Design, New York, after graduating in 1982 with a degree in animation. He returned to Beijing in 1984 and currently lives between Berlin and Beijing. Recently, the artist was exhibited at the Dimitri Shevardnadze National Gallery in Tbilisi, Georgia, by French collector John Dodelande.
Ai Weiwei: a multi-talented artist
Ai is simultaneously architect, sculptor, photographer, designer and activist. That’s all! Not stopping there, Ai is also an active defender of human rights and openly criticizes the Chinese government’s human rights strategies. In addition, he contributed as artistic consultant to the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 “Summer Olympics” in collaboration with the Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron.
In his youth, Weiwei was interested in art, and in 1978 he enrolled at the Beijing Film Academy, although he found greater creative and intellectual stimulation by being part of an avant-garde artists’ collective called Xingxing (“Stars”). Eager to escape the restrictions of Chinese society, he moved to the United States in 1981. Moving to New York City, he attended the Parsons School of Design (part of what is now the New School) and became actively involved in the city’s fertile subculture of artists and gypsies.
An abundance of exhibitions
Among the recent exhibitions of Ai Weiwei, we can mention :>
- Bare Life, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis, MO, USA;
- Wo ist die Revolution? Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Germany ;
- Ai Weiwei: Unbroken, Gardiner Museum, Toronto, ON, Canada in 2019;
- Ai Weiwei: Life Cycle, Marciano Art Foundation, Los Angeles, CA, USA;
Ai Weiwei also does group exhibitions. Among the most recent are “Mobile Immobile”, at the Archives Nationales in Pierrefitte-sur-Seine, France in 2019. In 2018, he participated in the 21st Biennale of Sydney 2050.