NEW YORK DAYS focuses on the formative decade Ai Weiwei spent in New York City. The video consists of photographs, artworks, and footage created by Ai during this period.
We see Ai, a young artist who first came to the city a painter, drawn to the art and the issues that would define him decades later—the ideas of Duchamp and Warhol, movements for social justice, and a photojournalistic streak. NEW YORK DAYS includes the earliest footage Ai has filmed, including an anti-war protest.
Video edited by:
I loved New York—every inch of it. It was like a monster.
- Ai Weiwei, Chinese artist (b. 1957)
When I order in a restaurant, I order everything that I don’t want.
- Andy Warhol, American artist (1928 - 1987)
What sphinx of cement and aluminium bashed open their skulls and ate up their brains and imagination?
- Allen Ginsberg, American poet (1926 - 1997)
All of life is a foreign country.
- Jack Kerouac, American writer (1922 - 1969)
Hanging Man, 1983
Safe Sex, 1987
Allen Ginsberg’s Birthday, 1990
Ai Weiwei Meets his Western Audience:
What does he want to tell us and what do we want to understand?
Download academic essay by Clelia Guareschi (LSE Graduate)