Ai Weiwei’s Special Exhibit at Alcatraz, a New Destination in International Art World
ai weiwei
Ai Weiwei
Ritual (detail), from the work S.A.C.R.E.D., 2011-13
Ai Weiwei: According to What? at Brooklyn Museum

Starting September 27, 2014, San Francisco’s Alcatraz will be the site for one of this year’s most important art exhibits internationally.

The “@Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz” exhibit, produced by the FOR-SITE Foundation, provides Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s sculpture, sound, and mixed-media installations in four locations in the former prison — areas which are usually restricted to the public. He created the work specifically for Alcatraz, and is using the space as an opportunity to explore questions of freedom of expression and human rights.

ai-refraction-studio-710x355“Refraction”
Created for @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz

Ai is internationally renowned for the way that his work defies any distinction between art and activism, and has personally paid the price for the latter. In 2011 he was secretly detained by Chinese authorities for 81 days, and as a result is not allowed to travel outside China! Ironically, his Alcatraz project, a celebration of free expression, was created while under severe constraints against free expression in Beijing.

You can see a wonderful chronology of Ai Weiwei’s career, spanning three decades, at artsy.net

ai-refraction-studio-710x355“With Wind”
Created for @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz

The exhibit (which will be on view until April 26, 2015) is being launched with an extraordinary gala, “Party on the Rock,” on September 26, 2014, chaired by Randi Fisher, Amy Rao, Norah Stone, Darian Swig and Susan Swig, with honorary chairs Roger Evans and Aey Phanachet, and a host committee made up of leading supporters of the San Francisco art world, such as Alka and Ravin Agrawal, Susie Tompkins Buell and Mark Buell, Sabrina Buell and Yves Behar, Courtney and Seth Dallaire, Bob Fisher, Sako and Bill Fisher, Stanlee Gatti, Charlot and Greg Malin, Norman Stone, Rick Swig, Thayer Walker, Sara and Evan Williams, among others.

Tickets for “Party on the Rock” can be purchased at eventbrite.com

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