Artists Exhibitions News USA

Ai Weiwei dioramas of his detention to go on show in Brooklyn

The fibreglass works were first shown at the Venice Biennale this year

The installation shows Ai Weiwei’s 2011 imprisonment with scenes of him being interrogated, sleeping, eating, going to the toilet and showering—all while two guards watch over him

Six fibreglass dioramas depicting Ai Weiwei’s 81 days in detention are to be shown at the Brooklyn Museum of Art next spring as part of the artist’s travelling exhibition “According to What?” (18 April-10 August).

The tableaux, each one enclosed in an iron box, were inaugurated during the opening week of the Venice Biennale in May, where they were shown inside a church. They depict Ai Weiwei’s 2011 imprisonment with scenes of him being interrogated, sleeping, eating, going to the toilet and showering—all while two guards watch over him.

“The work will have a much broader audience at the Brooklyn Museum [than it did in Venice]. Weiwei’s art makes such an important and powerful statement about human rights in China—one that deserves to be shared with as many people as possible,” says Sharon Matt Atkins, the curator who is organising the Brooklyn exhibition.


The installation shows Ai Weiwei’s 2011 imprisonment
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