Saturday, January 2, 2016

Warhol and Weiwei

I was never a real fan of Pop Art and couldn't see art in a picture of a soup can but decided that I should expand my mind and go and see Exhibition at NGV.
Never having heard of Ai Weiwei I was interested in what it would be like and hearing of new works for the exhibition decided it would be a good Saturday expedition.
Each of these  artists feature in this gargantuan display, developed by the NGV in collaboration with the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and with the participation of Ai Weiwei. With over 200 works by the iconic 20th century Renaissance man Andy Warhol, and 120 works by activist, architect, and artist Ai Weiwei, a contemplative conversation between the artists, who never met, unfolds.
Andy Warhol was a key figure in the American Pop Art movement. Using a limited palette and icons of consumer culture, celebrity and media encroachment, and symbols of everyday life Warhol’s work commented on the unfolding changing nature of common day America.

When the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was growing up, a Forever Bicycle was a luxury to him. One bike symbolised the freedom to move. The brand itself meant status, the best of the best.
Imagine what 10 Forever bicycles might have meant to a young Ai - or 1000. Then imagine more than 1500 of them piled nine metres high in a dizzying structure you can walk around and peer through, all those identical and mass-produced frames and wheels hanging static in the air instead of going forward.

The photo looks unfocused but the overlapping frames  create a blurred effect 
Forever Bicycles
Porcelein flower mat 
close up
Ai Weiwei 's love of the internet and his blog esp about social justice, caused him to be arrested in 2011 and jailed without trail for 81 days.
Upon his release his passport was revoked and his studio placed under constant surveillance 
His studio with Bike 
WITH FLOWERS saw him place a fresh bunch of flowers in his bike basket in a poetic protest against his restrictions to travel 

Photos of the daily fresh flowers 
As I blog I realise it was the Weiwei stuff that fascinated me! I need to go back and peruse the Warhol stuff more.
A new centrepiece of the Exhibition was Ai Weiwei’s installation Letgo Room’, which he has gifted to the NGV, is a cube room, with floor to ceiling portraits and quotes with Australian human rights activists, including Rosie Batty, Julian Assange, and Archie Roach. 

This room’s exterior compares Warhol and Weiwei’s Mao portraits, with Warhol Mao wallpaper adorning the walls under the watchful eyes of Weiwei’s portraits of Mao.
the Letgo floor. It was covered in plastic and made a noise as we walked 

 All in all
Need to go again!!
And the gorgeous chandelier (Weiwei)


Cecilia Meehan said...

We went to the Warhol Gallery in Pittsburg-his is a fascinating story , life and art works. The insights into Wei-Wei and his works you've shared here makes it perfectly understandable that you want to go back again. A great start to this endeavour :)

Cecilia Meehan said...

I hope it is only recently that you changed the blog's name :), I like it!

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