In his new exhibition at the Victoria & Albert Museum, notorious trickster-activist Ai Weiwei playfully approaches serious subject matter.
The show will feature Weiwei's works from the early 1990s to the present, many of which address globalization's toll on China's history and culture. The show will feature 'ready-made' Neolithic vessels from 5000 BC revamped in neon paint and corporate logos. According to the gallery, these will be "shown alongside a short film of Ai Weiwei producing the ‘ready-mades’ and a photographic triptych after which the display is named, showing Ai dropping an urn dating from the Han dynasty."
While fun and accessible, Weiwei's pieces are driven by a brave voice of protest and an investigative eye turned toward the meaning of value and where we place it. Weighty matters such as modernization and the global economy are thrown off their untouchable pedestal with Weiwei's playful aesthetic and mischevious style. As a major dissenting voice for modern China, Weiwei crafts pieces that are more than just fun to look at, but fun to look at nevertheless.
Ai Weiwei will feature at Victoria and Albert Museum, Ceramics Gallery from October 15 until March 18.