The Chinese multi-artist – and activist – Ai Weiwei is at present (still for a few days) exposing his works at the department store “Le Bon Marché” (on which I already posted, see here). Ai Weiwei has often had difficulties with the Chinese authorities, being in house arrest, prison…, although he has also had some more official assignments, like collaborating in the design of the Beijing National (Olympic) Stadium. There is too much to say about his activities – and problems – here, maybe one could just mention that he recently wrapped the Berlin Concert Hall with 14.000 refugee lifebelts, salvaged from the Greek coastline. (Pictures “stolen” on the net.) (You can read more about Ai Weiwei here.)
The dragons, birds etc. that we can see “flying” in the air at “Le Bon Marché” are based on ancient Chinese traditions, using bamboo sticks, silk paper.... Here are some examples.
To learn something more about how he and his team worked to produce these artworks, you are invited to watch a video.
Once in the building I thought I must also show some of the splendid ceilings.
You can also see some of Ai Weiwei’s artworks in the show windows, but the reflections made it quite impossible to give them justice.