The new illy Art Collection designed by Ai Weiwei is inspired by his famous Coloured Vases (2006), ancient Neolithic vases that the artist dipped into cans of industrial paint, radically changing their appearance and function. With these desecrating ready-mades Ai Weiwei renews and transforms an artefact from the past into a work of contemporary art, through a process of appropriation and destruction. This gesture eliminates the historical and cultural value of the artefact, alluding to the systematic destruction of history and culture that has continued in China from the time of Mao to today's unbridled state capitalism.
About Ai Weiwei
Conceptual artist, sculptor, painter, performer, photographer, architect and urban planner, collector, director (cinema, documentaries, theatre and opera), actor, musician (singer and lyricist), writer and publisher, blogger and master of the selfie, investigative journalist, human rights activist and dissident: the multifaceted personality of Ai Weiwei (Beijing, 1957). Considered to be one of the most influential global personalities of recent years, Ai Weiwei reflects on the complexity of society and the present day through a critical exploration of the often-problematic connection between China and the West.