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Ai Weiwei launches sale of benefit works on World Refugee Day

Ai Weiwei in front of his series of limited edition banners to mark World Refugee Day courtesy of eBay and Public Art Fund

Timed to coincide with World Refugee Day today (20 June), the activist artist Ai Weiwei has partnered with the New York-based non-profit Public Art Fund (PAF) and eBay to release a series of six limited edition banners to bring awareness to the refugee crisis and benefit humanitarian organisations. The banners—whose timeliness is heightened by the separation of parents and children at the US border—show portraits of immigrants and refugees, and are being offered on ebay.com/aiweiwei through June 27 (or until sold out) in editions of 500, sold individually for $750 or in a series for $4,500. The posters are half-scale versions of banners installed across New York City last year in Ai’s PAF-commissioned Good Fences Make Good Neighbours project. Proceeds from the sale will benefit the PAF as well as the USA for UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) and the International Rescue Committee. Weiwei says that work is “a reminder of the artist’s responsibility to defend the understanding that all humans share the same meaning of life”.