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Ai Weiwei: Circle Of Animals/Zodiac Heads
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5864564Ai Weiwei: Circle Of Animals/Zodiac Heads
DateFriday 1st May 2020 to Monday 1st June 2020
DescriptionIn celebration of its 40th anniversary, Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) is pleased to present sculptures by internationally acclaimed Chinese artist Ai Weiwei from 8 April 2017-22 April 2018. 'Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads' (2010) is a dramatic group of 12 bronze animal heads that has been on a worldwide tour since May 2011, making a colossal migration through Europe, Asia and the Americas. Presented in the Lower Park, visitors to YSP can enjoy an unusual year-long opportunity to see the seminal artwork. Viewed by millions of people in person, on the internet and through digital media, the work is one of the most viewed sculpture projects in the history of contemporary art. Ai reinterpreted the 12 bronze heads representing the traditional Chinese zodiac that once adorned the famed fountain-clock of the Yuanming Yuan, the imperial summer palace retreat in Beijing. Ransacked in 1860 during the Second Opium War by the British and French, only seven of the original heads have been returned to China - the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, horse, monkey, and boar. The locations of the other five - dragon, snake, goat, rooster, and dog - are still unknown. Central to Ai's reimagined zodiac is the metamorphosis provoked by expulsion, migration, and deliberate change of location undergone by people and objects alike. In 2015, Ai was awarded the Ambassador of Conscience Award by Amnesty International. Cast in bronze and standing three-metres-high, the sculptures each weigh 363kg. Through the re-interpretation of the heads on a larger scale, Ai comments and encourages debate on the politics of ownership, cultural history, repatriation and authenticity. The artist also wanted the work to be playful and accessible to the general public: "I want this to be seen as an object that doesn't have a monumental quality, but rather is a funny piece... people can relate to or interpret on many different levels, because everybody has a zodiac connection".
Time(s)Mon-Sun 10am-6pm, closed May 1-31, ends Jun 1
LocationYorkshire Sculpture Park
Pricefree, parking charges apply
Telephone No.01924 832631
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Yorkshire Sculpture Park
AddressBretton Hall
Telephone No.01924 830302
01924 832631
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