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+ : Ai Weiwei + Ai Qing: Without

movement there is no LifeWe should use our


energy to the fullest.
Posted:August17,2013|Author:ZcaloPoets|Filedunder:AiQing,Chinese(Mandarin),English|

TheretrospectiveexhibitionAiWeiwei:AccordingtoWhat?openstodayattheArtGalleryofOntarioin
Toronto,Canada.AiWeiwei(born1957)isChinasmostfamousorinfamousdependingonyour
weltanschauungcontemporaryartist.CurrentlywithoutapassportandnotpermittedtoleaveChina,Ai
Weiweihas,withateamofenergeticworkers,fashionedboldsculpturesfromhumblestools,bicycles,
firewood,compactedtealeavesevenrustylengthsofrebar.
Straightconsistsofseveralthousandsectionsofrebarsalvagedthenstraightenedoutfrom2008
earthquakerubbleofcollapsedbuildingsthatkilled5000schoolchildrenahorrificeventcombinedwith
shoddytofuarchitecturethatChineseauthoritiestriedtodownplaybutwhichAiWeiweisoughtto
memorialize.DavidJager,intheAugust15
th
issueofTorontosNOWmagazine,writes:Everyelementof
thesculpture,fromprocesstomaterialtofinalform[anundulatingmorainewithariftthroughit]expresses
Aisdeepdesiretoreshapeahopelesslycorruptandtangledsituation.Knowingthatthebodiesofthe
earthquakevictimswereoncetrappedwithinthesculpturalmaterialmakesasvisceralanimpactasseeing
apileofshoesfromAuschwitz.Thisiswhatartissupposedtodo.
WhetherheislettingdropandsmashaHandynastyurn,orstarring,withshavedheadandredrosebud
lips,inthemusicvideoDumbassabouthis2011jailexperienceAiWeiweiprovokesusandrespects
ourintelligence.
.
AiQing(pennameofJiangHaicheng,19101996)wasAiWeiweisfather,andanotablepoetoftheMao
ZedongerainChina.Inhisearly20sAiQingwasimprisonedfortwoyearsforopposingtheKuomintang
in1957hewassenttoahardlabourcampforcriticizinghisgovernmentinprinthespentthenext
twentyplusyearsemptyinglatrinesandsoforthaspartofhismentalcorrectionforWrongThoughtunder
Mao.WefeaturehereaselectionofAiQingspoems
. . .
Wall
.
Awallislikeaknife
Itslicesacityinhalf
Onehalfisontheeast
Theotherhalfisonthewest
.
Howtallisthiswall?
Howthickisit?
Howlongisit?
Evenifitweretaller,thickerandlonger
Itcouldntbeastall,asthickandaslong
AsChinasGreatWall
Itisonlyavestigeofhistory
Anationswound
Nobodylikesthiswall
.
Threemetrestallisnothing
Fiftycentimetresthickisnothing
Fortyfivekilometreslongisnothing
Evenathousandtimestaller
Evenathousandtimesthicker
Evenathousandtimeslonger
Howcoulditblockout
Theclouds,wind,rain,andsunshineoftheheavens?
.
Andhowcoulditblockout
Thecurrentsofwaterandair?
.
Andhowcoulditblockout
Abillionpeople
Whosethoughtsarefreerthanthewind?
Whosewillismoreentrenchedthantheearth?
Whosewishesaremoreinfinitethantime?
.
(1979)
.

. . .
Trees
.
Onetree,anothertree,
Eachstandingaloneanderect.
Thewindandair
Telltheirdistanceapart.
.
Butbeneaththecoverofearth
Theirrootsreachout
Andatdepthsthatcannotbeseen
Therootsofthetreesintertwine.
.
(1940)
.

. . .
FishFossil
.
Withsuchagilityinyourmovements,
Suchbuoyancyinyourstrength,
Youleaptinthefoam
Andswaminthesea.
.
Unfortunately,avolcanoseruption
Orperhapsanearthquake
Costyouyourfreedom
Andburiedyouinthesilt.
.
Aftermillionsofyears
Membersofageologicalteam
Foundyouinalayerofrock
Andyoustilllookalive.
.
Butyouarenowsilent,
Withoutevenasigh.
Yourscalesandfinsarewhole
Butyoucannotmove.
.
Soabsolutelymotionless,
Youhavenoreactiontotheworld.
Youcannotseethewaterorthesky,
Youcannothearthesoundofthewaves.
.
Gazingatthisfossil,
Evenafoolcanlearnalot:
Withoutmovement
Thereisnolife.
.
Toliveistostruggle
Andadvanceinthestruggle
Evenifdeathisnotatourdoorstep,
Weshoulduseourenergytothefullest.
.

. . .
Hope
.
Dreamsfriend
Illusionssister
.
Originallyyourshadow
Yetalwaysinfrontofyou
.
Asformlessaslight
Asrestlessaswind
.
Betweenyouandher
Shekeepsherdistancealways
.
Likeflyingbirdsoutsidethewindow
Likefloatingcloudsinthesky
.
Likebutterfliesbytheriver
Sheisslyandlovely
.
Whenyourise,shefliesaway
Youignoreher,andshenudgesyou
.
Sheisalwayswithyou
Toyourdyingbreath.
. . .

CoalsReply
.
Wheredoyoulive?
.
Iliveintenthousandyearsofsteepmountain
Iliveintenthousandyearsofcragrock
.
Andyourage?
.
Myageisgreaterthanthemountains
Greaterthanthecragrocks
.
Howlonghaveyoubeensilenced?
Sincethedinosaursgovernedtheearth
Sincetheearthfeltitsfirsttremor
.
Haveyouperishedinthisdeeprancourandbitterness?
.
Death?No,no,Imstillalive
Please,givemealight,givemealight.
.
(1937)
.

. . .
TranslationsfromtheChinese:ChenEoyang,PengWenlan,andMarilynChin
. . . . .

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