Ai Weiwei: According to What?

This so-called contemporary art is not a form but a philosophy of society.

Ai Weiwei is one of the world’s best-known living political artists as the eloquent critic of the oppressive Chinese regime. His art speaks to the possibilities and purposes beyond the visual.

An Ai Weiwei retrospective has opened at the Hirshhorn in Washington. The subtitle “According to What?” refers to the debilitating irrationality of life under totalitarianism. His passport was confiscated last year during a crackdown on dissent preventing him from traveling to the October 7th opening.

His art is striking and powerful and watching this PBS Art 21 Video when he was under house detention shows something of his politics.

“Ai Weiwei: According to What” runs through Feb. 24 at the Hirshhorn Museum, before moving on to venues in Indianapolis, Toronto, Miami and Brooklyn.

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