Ai Weiwei was born in 1957 in Beijing and now lives and works in Berlin.
“Roots” presents a new series of monumental sculptural works in iron, cast from giant tree roots sourced in Brazil during research and production for last year’s survey exhibition, “Raiz”, at the OCA Pavilion in Ibirapuera Oark, São Paulo.
The artist worked with artist and communities across Brazil to find roots and trunks of the endangered pequi-vinagreiro tree, from the Bahian forest. Using some elements of these trees and the “lost wax” technique, Ai Weiwei created new composition reflecting both their Brazilian heritage and new fantastical creatures: a series of works not born of nature but made by human hands, representing a society uprooted by industrialisation and modernisation, showing how progress can often come at the expense of cultural and societal well-being.
- Ai Weiwei: Roots, courtesy of Lisson Gallery