Fragments by Ai WeiWei is an art installation currently showing at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in the Smithsonian Museum as part of the Perspectives: Ai Weiwei exhibition. As with all of his work, this art installation is a socially conscious creation. Through this piece, the prolific Chinese artist explores "the bewildering reality that we live in the midst of a world undergoing rapid spatial and social transformations," as written on the Smithsonian's Museums of Asian Art's website.
Made using salvaged wood from several dismantled Qing dynasty temples, Fragments by Ai WeiWei forms a circular grove surrounded by manmade 'trees.' Although the sculptures look rather chaotic, upon closer inspection an elaborate system of masterful joinery and delicate balance can be perceived. The poles that anchor the installation mark out the borders of a map of China.
Salvaged Temple Wood Installations
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