|accrochage «Struggle(s)» april - june 2012
Ai Weiwei, born in 1957 in China, lives and works in Beijing.
His artistic practice encompasses a wide range of media, from architecture and sculpture to photography, writing and film. Through his work Ai engages with issues pertinent to contemporary China, notably the loss of historical culture due to rapid modernization and the effects of the global economy on traditional modes of production. He asserts the right to engage in social criticism of his country and to decry oppression, while refusing to be labeled a political artist.
His work also deals with broader themes, including perceptions of value, mass production, globalization and concepts of the ‘fake’ and the ‘real’. The artist expresses himself in a distinctive, simple formal idiom, in a dialogue with factual history and personal memory. His art relates to the universal human condition and insists on respect for the individual.