Ai Wei Wei at The Royal Academy, London

Last month I attended an early breakfast hosted by the Penninsula Hotels Group, at the Royal Academy London. After an insightful talk presenting current and future hotel plans we were treated to a private view of Ai Wei Wei’s first major UK exhibition.

Ai became widely known in Britain after his sunflower seeds installation in Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall in 2010 but this is the first major institutional survey of his work ever held in the UK and it bridges over two decades of his extraordinary career.

Curated in collaboration with Ai Weiwei from his studio in Beijing, the Royal Academy presents some of his most important works from the time he returned to China from the US in 1993 right up to present day. Among new works created specifically for their galleries and courtyard are a number of large-scale installations, as well as works showcasing everything from marble and steel to tea and glass.With typical boldness, the chosen works explore a multitude of challenging themes, drawing on his own experience to comment on creative freedom, censorship and human rights, as well as examining contemporary Chinese art and society.

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“The work that you will see at the RA transcends the world of the gallery… This is an exhibition that reveals art’s greatest potential.” – The Times

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To try and secure a ticket click here, and good luck, tickets are like gold dust.

All images / LWSY

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