Ai Weiwei, Rineke Dijkstra et al.
When Home Won't Let You Stay: Migration through Contemporary Art (group show)
Cantor Arts Center, Stanford
5 February – 31 May 2021
In the spring of 2021, the Cantor will open a group exhibition on the subject of contemporary migration, immigration, and the displacement of peoples. Drawing inspiration from British-Somali poet Warsan Shire’s “Home,” When Home Won’t Let You Stay: Migration through Contemporary Art examines how the forces of migration touch us all, radically destabilizing ideas of home, place, transit, and belonging in the 21st century.
Cantor Arts Center, Stanford
Rineke Dijkstra et al.
NEU#01. Contemporary Photography (group show)
Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, Stuttgart
16 March – 2 May 2021
The exhibition NEU#01. Contemporary Photography features new works acquired by the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart since the 1970s. The selection includes Allan Kaprow's conceptual works, photographs by Tata Ronkholz (who was a student of Becher), and works by Anette Kelm and Rineke Dijkstra, who address social phenomena in their photographs.
Winner of The Johannes Vermeer Award 2020
We congratulate Rineke Dijkstra for being granted the 2020 The Johannes Vermeer Award! Dijkstra was awarded for her significant contribution to photography and portraiture, promoting the international prestige of Dutch visual arts with her work. The jury declared: "This work is for eternity. Few artists have been given the talent to create these types of images."
The presentation ceremony will take place on Thursday, 18 February 2021 in the Ridderzaal in The Hague.
Johannes Vermeer Award
Rineke Dijkstra et al.
i'm yours: Encounters with Art in Our Times (group show)
Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Boston
18 November 2020 – 23 May 2021
i’m yours: Encounters with Art in Our Times celebrates the power of experiencing art in person. This exhibition, which borrows its title from a Henry Taylor painting in the ICA collection, is conceived as an invitation to our visitors to create a personal connection with works of art. Collaboratively and virtually organized in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest, i’m yours is presented within a dramatic, raw architectural space as a series of small galleries, each offering a different artistic perspective to emphasize that the stories museums may tell through art are never fixed but always in process. Comprising unique encounters with new acquisitions and iconic works from the ICA’s collection, the exhibition’s groupings, or scenes, address a range of topics, including ideas of home and history, social and material transformation, and frames of identity in portraiture and sculpture.
Ai Weiwei et al.
There is Another Way of Looking at Things (group show)
SCHAUWERK Sindelfingen, Sindelfingen
5 September 2020 – 24 May 2021
“THERE IS ANOTHER WAY OF LOOKING AT THINGS” – this sentence is both our exhibition’s title and motto and reminds us that we have the possibility to view things differently. The quote is taken from Maurizio Nannucci’s eponymous neon work from 2012. Its text has lost none of its topicality. On the contrary, it is more current than ever.
The exhibition features ten works from the Schaufler Collection which can be reviewed under the impression of the present change of times. Included are works by Ai Weiwei, Tony Cragg, Jeppe Hein, Lori Hersberger, Lee Bul, Maurizio Nannucci, Giulio Paolini, Mario Schifano, and Erwin Wurm. These artworks shed light on what contemporary art is doing not only in times of crisis: It questions the values of our time and takes a stance.
Coronation (2020) (film)
“Coronation” (2020) is a documentary film about the lockdown in Wuhan, China, during the Covid-19 outbreak in the spring of 2020.
On December 31, 2019, the first novel coronavirus case was confirmed in Wuhan. Chinese officials repeatedly denied that human-to-human transmission was possible, concealed the number of diagnosed patients, and punished medical staff for disclosing information about the epidemic. On January 23, 2019, Wuhan was placed under a city-wide lockdown. Covid-19 has become a global pandemic, with over 17 million people infected and over 670,000 deaths.
“Coronation” examines the political specter of Chinese state control from the first to the last day of the Wuhan lockdown. The film records the state’s brutally efficient, militarized response to control the virus. Sprawling emergency field hospitals were erected in a matter of days, 40,000 medical workers were bused in from all over China, and the city’s residents were sealed into their homes.
The film takes us into the heart of these temporary hospitals and ICU wards, showing the entire process of diagnosis and treatment. Patients and their families are interviewed, reflecting their thinking about the pandemic and expressing anger and confusion over the states’ callous restriction of their liberties. The film also takes us into the private lives of individuals living under the lockdown: a couple attempt to return to their home in Wuhan, a courier delivers essentials to residents barred from leaving their community, an emergency construction worker stuck in limbo and forced to live out of his car, a former party cadre and her son debate the function of the media and the party’s response to the outbreak, a grieving son navigates the bureaucracy of retrieving his father's ashes.
China has assumed the status of superpower on the global stage, yet it remains poorly understood by other nations. Through the lens of the pandemic, “Coronation” clearly depicts the Chinese crisis management and social control machine—through surveillance, ideological brainwashing, and brute determination to control every aspect of society. The film shows the changes that took place in a city and in individual space under the impact of the virus; it illustrates the value of individual life in the political environment, reflecting on the difficulties we face as individuals and countries in the context of globalization. Ultimately, the result is a society lacking trust, transparency, and respect for humanity. Despite the impressive scale and speed of the Wuhan lockdown, we face a more existential question: can civilization survive without humanity? Can nations rely on one another without transparency or trust?
Ai Weiwei directed, produced, and completed post-production remotely in Europe. The filming was done by ordinary citizens living in Wuhan.
Ai Weiwei Films