Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is living a heavily restricted life in Beijing after being released from detention earlier this year, but his work is speaking volumes to people in the second-largest U.S. city.
Exhibition final day 26 June 2011
Multiyear international touring exhibition continues with displays in New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Washington DC and Pittsburgh. Additional European touring venues to be announced shortly.
This is the last chance to see Ai Weiwei’s zodiac‐themed animal head sculptures in the courtyard of Somerset House. Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads is the first public outdoor sculpture installation in London by the artist, who was freed on bail by Chinese authorities on Wednesday. While the first European presentation of this international touring exhibition closes this Sunday, an edition of the work is currently on display at the Pulitzer Fountain in New York until 15 July 2011 and will tour the United States over the next years, opening at LACMA on 1 September 2011.
Its public and critical success in London has led to an increased demand by public and private museums alike to show Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads. Further details on additional European touring venues will therefore be released shortly.
Brought to Somerset House by presenting sponsor and collaborative partner AW Asia, Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads comprises 12 monumental bronze animal heads, recreations of the traditional Chinese zodiac sculptures which once adorned the fountainclock of Yuanming Yuan, an 18th century imperial retreat outside Beijing. The heads are installed in an arc around Somerset House’s Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court in a close recreation of how they were originally displayed at Yuanming Yuan.
Tour venues and dates:
• Pulitzer Fountain, Grand Army Plaza, Central Park, New York (Until 15 July 2011)
• Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA (1 September 2011 ‐ 15 February 2012)
• Hermann Park, Houston, TX (25 February - 15 June 2012)
• Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC (15 June - 25 September
• Warhol Museum & Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA (1 October ‐ 12 December
The touring exhibition is accompanied by a new publication on the artist and his work.
Ai Weiwei: Circle of Animals
Edited by Susan Delson
220 pages with 180 illustrations, hardcover
US$49.95 £29.99 Can.$54.95
Publication date: October 2011
Published by Prestel
For more information about Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads by Ai Weiwei, visit www.zodiacheads.com.