Art Review: Sunflower Seeds @ Tate Modern Turbine Hall
For Weiwei, whose relationship with the Chinese authorities is difficult, and occasionally violent — despite working on the Bird's Nest stadium for the Beijing Olympics, he subsequently became disillusioned with the government, and has been savagely beaten by the state police force — the seeds represent the famine under Mao, and also the propaganda used during that era where Mao's face would be the sun, and sunflower seeds would represent the people, turning toward him for sustenance. How the Chinese will react to this new project from the country's most prominent artist, coming a week after the Nobel Peace prize was awarded to jailed democracy activist Liu Xiaobo, should be interesting to see.More than any Turbine Hall instatllation since Olafur Eliason's The Weather Project, this is one that will be made by the people who use it. As the cold nights draw in, it could become an enjoyable hideout from winter, full of people making 'seed angels', building sculptures and treating it like the beachside attraction London never had.The Unilever Series: Ai Weiwei opens tomorrow at Tate Modern and runs until May 2nd 2011. Entry is free.
Last Updated 11 October 2010