Ai Weiwei at HAM

In January 2016, members braved a bitterly cold day to visit the Ai Weiwei exhibition at the newly-renovated Helsinki Art Museum (HAM). We were welcomed by museum director, Maija Tanninen-Mattila, who discussed HAM’s place in Helsinki’s art realm. Then our excellent guide gave us an insight into the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, whose works are on show for the first time in Helsinki. Weiwei sees the artist’s role as a seeker of truth, and defending freedom of expression is an essential part of his life and work. The Helsinki exhibition concentrates on wood as a material the artist felt symbolizes Finland. This is epitomized in a 12-meter tall work Tree, assembled with visible bolts from trunks and branches of trees collected in southern China.

Ai Weiwei