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Study of Perspective Scarf by Ai Weiwei

Study of Perspective (Tiananmen) Scarf, 2013
silk with hand-rolled edges
43 x 43 inches (110 x 110 cm)

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This silk scarf with hand-rolled edges is by the Chinese artist and social activist Ai Weiwei. It depicts an image of Tiananman Square with the artist's hand giving it a finger in the foreground. In 2011, Weiwei was detained by the police for 81 days at the Beijing Capital International Airport while on his way to board a flight to Hong Kong. He was eventually released on bail for fabricated tax charges. Although the bail was lifted after a year, the authorities have not returned his passport and he remains prohibited from travelling outside China. The main subject of Weiwei's art and activism is the creative imprisonment he is forced to endure, and though this scarf is but a mere drop in his body of work, it nevertheless continues this investigation in the form of a commodity.