05.11.2014 - 01.02.2015

On the Table. Ai Weiwei offers a comprehensive view of the artist's life and work through the display of a variety of artworks and materials, set up to match the scale of La Virreina Image Centre.

The exhibition aims to give an idea of the scope of Ai Weiwei's artistic career, from his beginnings in 1980s New York to his present-day status as the best-known and most influential Chinese artist in the world. Work by this media-savvy activist calling for greater freedom in China can now be found in leading contemporary art museums and collections worldwide.

Ai Weiwei makes use of a number of artistic practices, including photography and documentary film, sculpture, design and architecture, in operations that transcend formats and disciplines to create images that infiltrate and propagate through social networks and popular culture. In addition to several key pieces for appreciating this artist’s work, the show at La Virreina Image Centre also presents unseen work, new productions and installations by Ai Weiwei specially designed for this exhibition.

Opening: Tuesday 4 November, at 7.30 pm.

Curator: Rosa Pera

Read more You can download the exhibition leaflet here

Take part in the interactive installation #AWWOnTheTable

  • Image taken from Ai Weiwei's Instagram, 2014. Photo credit: Ai Weiwei
  • Image taken from Ai Weiwei's Instagram, 2014. Photo credit: Ai Weiwei
  • Cao, 2014 © Ai Weiwei
  • National Stadium Photographs, 2014. National Stadium No. 2 (04.04.2006) © Ai Weiwei
  • Map of China, 2004 © Ai Weiwei
  • He Xie, 2011 © Ai Weiwei
  • Study of Perspective, 1995–2011, 2014 © Ai Weiwei
  • Beijing Photographs, 1993–2001. A guard on the Gate of Heavenly Peace, Tiananmen Square. 1993 © Ai Weiwei
  • Beijing Photographs, 1993–2001. Han Dynasty urn for sale outside of the city wall of Xi’an. 1995 © Ai Weiwei
  • Illumination, 2009 © Ai Weiwei
  • New York Photographs, 1983–1993. Profile of Duchamp, Sunflower Seeds. 1983 © Ai Weiwei

Untitled (Ai Weiwei Studio Table) (2000), the piece that lends its name to the exhibition, is a table from Ai Weiwei’s studio in Beijing that has been installed in the former dining room at the Palau de la Virreina.

This table has several thousand meetings in its memory. Professionals from all over the world have gathered with Ai Weiwei around this table to organise and discuss the projects, publications and shows he has been involved with since 2000. This piece is therefore an expression for the artist’s desire for dialogue and conversation, for sharing and discussing ideas and attitudes available to anyone who wants to sit at it during the exhibition.

If you want to be a part of it, take a photo of your interaction with the table (a meeting, a conversation, taking time out, etc.) and upload your image to Instagram with the hashtag #AWWOnTheTable. Your images will form part of the installation and can also be seen and shared on this web gallery.

While the exhibition is on, the Barcelona Culture Institute will display these images on the four tablets in this installation, as well as on its website, http://lavirreina.bcn.cat/en/exhibitions/table-ai-weiwei. These images may be shared, but the Barcelona Culture Institute shall not be liable for any third-party use of them.