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Ai Weiwei, Edmund de Waal

The Precious Clay (group show)
The Museum of Royal Worcester, Worcester
20 August 2018 – March 2019

Edmund de Waal, In Time II, 2017 © Edmund de Waal. Photo: Mike Bruce
Edmund de Waal, In Time II, 2017 © Edmund de Waal. Photo: Mike Bruce

Meadow Arts and the Museum of Royal Worcester present an exhibition exploring contemporary art and porcelain, The Precious Clay. The exhibition will examine why and how artists choose to use this legendary material in their practice. With its origins in the Far East and a long global history, porcelain holds rich associations of preciousness, mutability and exoticism: the artists’ work responds to these associations in lively and inventive ways.

The Museum of Royal Worcester, Worcester


Additional:

Ai Weiwei

Ai Weiwei: Bare Life (solo show)
Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University, St. Louis
28 September 2019 - 5 January 2020

Ai Weiwei, Tear Gas Canisters, 2016. Courtesy of Ai Weiwei Studio
Ai Weiwei, Tear Gas Canisters, 2016. Courtesy of Ai Weiwei Studio

This fall the newly expanded and renovated Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum will reopen with a major exhibition of work by Ai Weiwei. The renowned Chinese dissident artist and activist is internationally known for rigorous, compassionate, and complex artworks that address themes of political, ethical, and social urgency. Designed by the artist and curated by Sabine Eckmann, William T. Kemper Director and Chief Curator, Ai Weiwei: Bare Life will be on view from September 28, 2019, through January 5, 2020.

The exhibition will feature more than 35 artworks created over the last two decades in a wide variety of mediums—among them sculptures, installations, photographs, and films. A selection of newly conceived large-scale and site-specific projects will be placed in dialogue with some of Ai’s most iconic works and several major artworks never before exhibited in the United States. Together, these objects provide new insight into Ai’s abiding concern for human rights and the global condition of humanity while showcasing his profound engagement with Chinese culture past and present—especially the radical shifts that have characterized China in the new millennium.

Ai Weiwei: Bare Life, which is organized into two thematic sections, takes its title from the writings of the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben, who has long examined the notion of bare, unprotected life and its manifestations throughout human history. In recent years, Agamben’s ideas have gained new force as approximately 70 million people have been displaced from their homelands and deprived of basic human rights.

Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University, St. Louis


Edmund de Waal

The Library of Memory (symposium)
Ateneo Veneto, Venice
19 – 20 September 2019

Edmund de Waal, the library of exile, installation view, Ateneo Veneto, Venice, 2019 © Edmund de Waal. Courtesy of the artist, Photo: Fulvio Orsenigo
Edmund de Waal, the library of exile, installation view, Ateneo Veneto, Venice, 2019 © Edmund de Waal. Courtesy of the artist, Photo: Fulvio Orsenigo

An international symposium for the psalm cultural programme in Venice. This symposium brings together Edmund de Waal, Murray Baumgarten, Margaret Brose, Piotr Cywinski, Marc Epstein, Yoel Finkelman, Eva Hoffman, Mary Hoffman, Simon Levis Sullam, Fania Oz-Salzberger, Bill Sherman, Daniel Vogelman and James Young at the Ateneo Veneto, Venice.

The psalm cultural programme is a special series of events that has been curated together with the Center for the Humanities and Social Change at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. Centred on themes of translation, exile, migration and diaspora, the programme aims to bring the experiences of contemporary writers in exile into focus and to celebrate works in translation. Symposiums, readings, performances and more are being held in several venues throughout the biennale. Special activities for children will also run during the summer months and into the autumn.

Edmund de Waal website

psalm cultural programme


Edmund de Waal

Elective Affinities: Edmund de Waal at the Frick Collection (solo show)
The Frick Collection, New York
30 May - 17 November 2019

Edmund de Waal, Elective Affinities, installation view, The Frick Collection, New York, 2019. Photo: Christopher Burke
Edmund de Waal, Elective Affinities, installation view, The Frick Collection, New York, 2019. Photo: Christopher Burke

The Frick Collection presents a temporary installation of sculptures by acclaimed author and ceramist Edmund de Waal. Site-specific works made of porcelain, steel, gold, marble, and glass are displayed in the museum's main galleries alongside works from the permanent collection.

De Waal is known for his installations of porcelain vessels housed in minimal structures, often created in response to collections and archives or the history of a specific place. Past sites have included Waddesdon Manor and the Chatsworth House — this project marks his first such installation in the United States.

The Frick Collection, New York


Ai Weiwei

Everything is art. Everything is politics (solo show)
K20 / K21, Kunstsammlung NRW, Düsseldorf
18 May - 1 September 2019

Ai Weiwei, Everything is art. Everything is politics, installation view, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, K21, 2019. Photo: Achim Kukulies © Kunstsammlung NRW
Ai Weiwei, Everything is art. Everything is politics, installation view, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, K21, 2019. Photo: Achim Kukulies © Kunstsammlung NRW

"Everything is art. Everything is politics": with these words, the internationally acclaimed contemporary artist Ai Weiwei encapsulates the basic principle of his working approach. This motto is also the leitmotif of his largest exhibition in Europe to date, which will be on view simultaneously at the K20 and the K21 of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen.

Large-scale works and extensive image wallpaper transform the museum galleries into dense, accessible installations. The close interlocking of political engagement with artistic activity in the oeuvre of this important and disputatious artist allows the contradictions of the present day to become tangible.

Ai Weiwei, who was born in Beijing in 1957, is celebrated worldwide as an artist, architect, curator, film director and photographer. Impressions of Conceptual and Pop Art gathered during his time in New York during the 1980s proved fruitful for his working methods, which aim toward a critical examination of cultural history and developments in global society.

Kunstsammlung NRW, Düsseldorf


Edmund de Waal

psalm (solo show)
To coincide with the 58th Venice Biennale
Canton Scuola Synagogue / Ateneo Veneto, Venice
8 May - 29 September 2019

Edmund de Waal, the library of exile, 2019, Ateneo Veneto, Venice © Edmund de Waal. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Fulvio Orsenigo
Edmund de Waal, the library of exile, 2019, Ateneo Veneto, Venice © Edmund de Waal. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Fulvio Orsenigo

Edmund de Waal is creating a major new two-part exhibition to be displayed in the 500-year-old Jewish Ghetto in Venice, coinciding with the opening of the 58th Biennale.

The first part is located in the spaces surrounding the Canton Scuola, the beautiful 16th century synagogue in the Ghetto Nuovo, which is now part of the Jewish Museum.

New installations of porcelain, marble and gold will reflect the literary and musical heritage of this extraordinary place. The intention is to animate spaces that are little known and little understood by visitors to the Biennale and to bring new audiences into the Ghetto.

The second part of the work will be a pavilion based at the Ateneo Veneto, the fifteenth-century building near the Fenice Opera House that has been an historic centre for cultural debate in Venice. Here, de Waal is constructing a small building within the main space that will house 2,000 books by exiled writers, from Ovid to the present day.

Edmund de Waal said: “This is the project I have always dreamed of doing. It is about exile – what it means to have to move to another country, to speak another language. It brings new installations based on the Psalms, the poetry of exile, into some of the most beautiful spaces of the Ghetto, the first time some of these spaces have been used for contemporary art. And my library for the Ateneo – two thousand books within a porcelain-covered pavilion – will be the most significant sculpture of my life. It will be a new library reflecting Venice’s thousand years as a place of translation, a space to sit and read and be.”

Edmund de Waal website

Museo Ebraico, Venice