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Ai Weiwei Installation Uses Antique Wood From Dismantled Qing Dynasty Temples

'Fragments' is a seemingly chaotic structure made from reclaimed wood that resembles the borders of a map of China when viewed from above.

Emma Hutchings
Emma Hutchings on May 24, 2012.

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s installation ‘Fragments’ features in an exhibition at the Smithsonian’s Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. He transformed pillars and beams of reclaimed ironwood from several dismantled Qing dynasty temples into a large-scale and seemingly chaotic structure. Yet when the piece is examined more closely, you see that it is an elaborate system of masterful joinery and delicate balance relations. When viewed from above, the entire installation is anchored by poles marking out the borders of a map of China.

Ai Weiwei Installation Uses Antique Wood From Dismantled Qing Dynasty Temples

Perspectives: Ai Weiwei is being presented at the same time as a retrospective of the artist’s works at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and runs through to April 7th 2013. You can view a time-lapse video of the installation of ‘Fragments’ below:

Perspectives: Ai Weiwei

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