Law Of The Journey By Ai Weiwei

View all 12 Photos

“There’s no refugee crisis, but only human crisis… In dealing with refugees we’ve lost our very basic values.” These are the words of Ai Weiwei, one of the world’s best known contemporary artists, whose work often includes powerful political, social and human commentary. After visits to refugee camps, including on the island of Lesbos in Greece, Ai Weiwei created the “Law of the Journey” exhibition alongside the Human Flow documentary. Curated by Jiří Fajt and Adam Budak, the exhibition includes large scale sculptures and installations. The location, a building which served as an assembly point for Jewish people right before their deportation to concentration camps, has a poignant meaning that enhances the message of the main artwork further.

Visitors to the National Gallery in Prague discover a moving and thought-provoking piece. A giant 230-foot long boat, suspended in mid-air, holding over 300 dark and faceless figures. All huddled together, children in the middle for extra protection. A few figures lie underneath the boat, their journey ended prematurely. “In this time of uncertainty, we need more tolerance, compassion and trust for each other, since we all are one,” continues Ai Weiwei. Another artwork, Laundromat (2016), displays clothing from refugee camps in the style of an ordinary apparel store, with items neatly placed on racks, as if waiting for customers. Other installations include Snake Ceiling (2009), an homage to the 5,000 children who lost their lives in the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, With Flowers (2013–2015), as well as Traveling Light (2007), a large chandelier anchored on a pillar dating back to the Ming dynasty.

The exhibition runs until January 2018 at the National Gallery in Prague. But if you can’t travel to Europe, we have some good news. Ai Weiwei’s next exhibition is in New York City. “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors” opens on October 12 and will include over 100 fences built around the city to highlight the “exclusionary attitude towards migrants and refugees.” Photo credits: Ai Weiwei and The National Gallery in Prague.

Take me there

  • Naked Stables Resort

    A two hour trip away from China’s largest city, Shanghai, Moganshan stuns with its magical…

  • Sublime Comporta

    Surrounded by rice fields, umbrella pines, vineyards, and miles of pristine white beaches, Sublime Comporta…

More for you

  • Radiator By Borgman | Lenk

    Built in 1250, this Franciscan church and monastery is one of Berlin’s oldest monuments. It’s…

  • Danakil By Andrea Frazzetta

    Italian photographer Andrea Frazzetta has traveled all over the world, visiting over 50 countries in…

  • Color Factory

    If you live in San Francisco or if you’re planning to visit this August, you…

  • Concrete Sculptures By David Umemoto

    Inspired – at least in part – by mid-century brutalist architecture, David Umemoto’s concrete sculptures…

  • Paper Cloud By Studio 3A

    Located in an old courtyard in Montpellier, France, Paper Cloud stands out against natural stone…

  • Typewriter Guns By Éric Nado

    Words can have a bigger impact than weapons and violence. The Typewriter Guns series by…

  • Hello Mello By Steven Harrington

    First exhibited at the Strawberry Festival which took place at Shanghai Expo Park, Steven Harrington’s…

  • 1000 Gestalten At G20 2017

    Art provides a powerful tool for social and political activism. 1000 Gestalten proved this in…

Close Cart

Simple Share Buttons