Social activism and art. Ai Weiwei.
August 6, 2012 § Leave a comment
There are many artists who are indifferent to current situations in politics and society. Thus they not only express their ideas through art but also try to change everything they do not like about the situation. Well, they deserve praise indeed in case they are not doing it to attract one’s attention.
Obviously Chinese artist and social activist Ai Weiwei deserves one’s respect and attention. Even though Weiwei is well known artist world-wide this fact didn’t stop Chinese government to arrest and imprison him in 2011. How come? Once he accused the Chinese authorities of corruption and bribery investigating the Sichuan schools corruption scandal. It was daring indeed. But it cost a lot. In 2010 Chinese officials ordered to destroy his studio located in Shanghai. Earlier they shut down his blog wherein Weiwei posted articles and documents concerning his investigation. At the same time Weiwei was prevented several times to leave the country. How come? Well, they explained it as the reason of national security.
After arrest on 3 April, 2011 officers searched his studio in Beijing. He was accused of economic crimes. How ingenious they are! People required Weiwei to be released. The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation as well as the International Council of Museums organized petitions and managed to collect over 90000 signatures protesting Weiwei’s arrest. On 22 June Weiwei was finally released on bail. Actually he has no right to leave the capital for one years without special permission. It is well known that Weiwei is forbidden to share much information about his detention. Anyway he described it as hellish. Weiwei’s sister said some details of his confinement. “…[he] spent his days of confinement in a tiny room with only a bed for furniture and two police officers who monitored his every movement, even standing next to him in the shower”.
It is still forbidden for him to leave the country as he is suspected of pornography, bigamy and other crimes.