Tuesday, January 1, 2013

To Understand and be Understood

Ai Weiwei and Zuoxian Zuzhou with two police officers in
Chengdu's Anyi Hotel elevator, at 5 a.m. August 12, 2009.
(when taken in custody by the police)
Sichuan, China, C-print, 4x5 inches
Considered by the editors of Art Review as "the world's most powerful artist,"Ai Weiwei uses social media to "exchange information and express ideas." He writes "art in all its forms is about the effort to understand and be understood" (Art Forum, September 2012, p. 511). He kept a blog from 2006-2009 making more than 2,700 posts using the new Sina blog platform. At first, he didn't even know how to type and thought of blogging as an opportunity "to exercise his literary side influenced by Ai Qing, his dissident poet father's legacy. Today, his art encompasses photography, installation, sculpture, architecture, and increasingly social media. His blog posts have been published in Ai Weiwei's Blog: Writings, Interviews, and Digital Rants, 2006-2009 by MIT Press, 2011, and his views have been recorded in a recent documentary, Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry.  He continues to uses Twitter daily to comment on politics, media, and life.

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