MOMARDI

Slowalking, Chairs Plus Barenaked for Ai Weiwei. Protests Around the World

4 May 2011art

Cover photo Hamish Fulton Walk 2: Margate Marine Pool © Dan Bass

The inauguration of Ai Weiwei´s sculpture installation (Circle of animals/Zodiac heads) in New York has just been bumped off following the death of Osama bin laden. I hope Ai Weiwei will not become yesterday´s news just because everyone is anticipating OBL´s death photo. The death of a mastermind terrorist is probably CNN´s top money-making headline of the moment but the death of freedom of expression – which Weiwei now symbolizes – is equally important. 30 days have passed and still no word of Weiwei´s whereabouts.

Last weekend, British artist Hamish Fulton staged a slowalking performance at Tate with the help of 100 volunteers in support of Ai Weiwei.

*Slowalking by Hamish Fulton at the Tate*

Charlotte Eater, 32, a laughter yoga teacher from North London, painted the words “Thank you Ai Wei wei” and freedom over her body before deciding to walk across Weiwei´s sunflower installation at the Tate, barenaked. Some Tate staff members saw her but nobody stopped her. Somebody even shouted bravo.

In Hongkong, hundreds of protestors have demanded the release of Ai Weiwei by using chairs to form the word prison, echoing Ai Weiwei´s Ming and Qing chair installation in Germany in 2007.

Chair Protest for Ai Weiwei, Hongkong
Ai Weiwei at the Ted Conference

Photo credit: Ai Weiwei missing by Laihiu