Why do you remain in China?

If you were in Ai Weiwei’s shoes, would you have stayed in China?

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  1. Jared V and Jeremiah M on -

    Because they wont let him leave anyways so there is no point in trying. Another reason is because if he leaves China then he isnt around the government that is out to get him so it will make him less popular.

  2. Tristan L. on -

    Because the government of China treated him like crap and wouldn’t even let him leave just to display his art that was asked to be displayed in New York.

  3. His work is more impactful by continuing to work within China. The strength of his work draws in large part from his own inventive responses to the ways the Chinese government addresses (or fails to address) issues of transparency, human rights, and freedom of expression.

    1. IMA Staff
      IMA Staff on -

      Your point matches up perfectly with what Ai says in the video under “Who do you see as a primary audience for your work” – he wants his audience to not only be people who know art, but also ordinary people willing to understand other cultures and their struggles. Perhaps remaining in China is integral to staying in touch with the daily struggles in his homeland. If you view all the videos you’ll see so many links between them!

      1. I didn’t have time to go through all of the videos, but I will find a chance to do so. I also really enjoyed “Never Sorry” and I think it really helped to enhance my experience at the exhibition. Thanks so much for bringing this to Indy.

  4. Anonymous on -

    He is in a catch 22. He is Chinese, culturally raised to cherish it’s history and uniqueness. To not stay creates a conflict/loss for him, while staying and addressing issues may mean personal/professional sacrifices, it allows him to grow as a person which can create new ways for him to express his frustrations through art. How would he feel if he abandoned his family for fame/fortune and no regard for their sacrifices.

  5. Archie T. on -

    Given his level of global exposure, it seems that his burden is now staying in that public spotlight by continuing to speak out against corruption.

    1. IMA Staff
      IMA Staff on -

      Interesting points! What if we changed “burden” to “opportunity”? Seems there is an opportunity to capitalize on the global exposure and seize the moment while the spotlight is shining.

      1. Anonymous on -

        As an opportunity, I think there is a social responsibility to act. He is with his people and acting as a voice for his people.

  6. Ted Anderson on -

    Their leaders and officials seem very distant from the rest of the population, even more so than American leaders. I would not feel very secure or safe.

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