Ai Weiwei unveils Sydney Biennale artwork, talks change in China

Ai Weiwei unveils Sydney Biennale artwork, talks change in China
From CBC - March 13, 2018

Ai, one of China's most high-profile artists and politicalactivists, has become a vocal campaigner on migration as thenumber of people forced from their homeslargely by violenceand warhas reached a record 65 million.

In Sydney, Ai presented his 60-metre-longinflatable raft, carrying about 300 oversized human figures, aday after China removed the term limits from its constitution,raising concerns about a return to strongman rule.

"China has always been emperor state," Ai, 60, told theAustralian Broadcasting Corp in an interview.

"It does not matter if it has the title of communist, nowcapitalism. It's a fatalistic society, so [if]it changes leaderor not change leader, the system and the culture always stay thesame."

Refugee-themed work at Sydney Biennale

First designed for the National Gallery of Prague, Ai's Lawof the Journeyis made from the rubber used by vessels carryingrefugees across the Mediterranean Sea.

Installed on Cockatoo Island, a former shipbuilding site, itwill serve as the centrepiece of the Sydney Biennale, runningfrom Friday to June 11.

Ai said the location was appropriate because of Australia'scontroversial policy of detaining unauthorized boat arrivals incamps in the Pacific island nation of Nauru and Papua NewGuinea's Manus Island.


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