Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Sunflower Seeds by Ai Weiwei

The Sunflower Seeds by Weiwei has a poet balance to the nature of the piece.  Originally produced to go into the Tate Modern Turbine Hall, these small porcine sunflower seed would just lay in amongst themselves with the viewer being about to go walk and sit on the seeds.  The poetic balance in the piece comes when looking at the scale in which Weiwei works. Replicating a natural form of a seed repeatedly to feel the space has a harmony about it and has more of a dramatic effect than one stand alone seed. Weiwei did this because of his connection to china and how “Seeds are a household object”, looking into Chinese culture especially in modern times, society is consider over crowed. This is supported by the law of only having one child per couple before paying tax on addition children.

The artist always hoped for his work to be interactive and have people in the middle of it, which due to the delicate symbolism of porcine and the fact that each individual seed was hand painted, I’d imagine this to be a protected and secure piece.  However this hardship and effort put into the work is something Weiwei wanted to show; therefore allowing the viewer to enjoy it interacting with the work almost makes it worth it. This is something that beholds a lot of families at the moment no matter where you are from; the lack of appreciation that hard work can pay off. 

The symbolism of the seed itself extends many horizons as well. Firstly the idea of birth and something started is the pure purpose of a seed in itself, however with so many collectively together, frozen with its fragile core can be perceived in opposed to this. What comes to mind with this is when something isn't right or in my eyes a dream isn't growing it gets left in a pile with the rest.

Considering this, the scale of the art work and the hardship involved; Weiwei personal connect and moral hardship is visible. Though some may see the work as simple and not understand the piece, they should appreciate it purely down to the beauty and accuracy of the individual seeds.

Please feel free to contact me on the information given with any questions and suggestions you may have. Thank you for you time.

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