Image credit: Rick Pushinsky


Ai Weiwei: Making Sense

Ai Weiwei is now making sense.

Not that he hasn’t done before, he’s normally pretty clear in the messages he wants to put across…

It’s actually the name of the artist-activist’s latest major show which has just landed at the Design Museum, running until 30th July 2023. 

ai weiwei exhibition

Ed Reeve

Making Sense marks Ai Weiwei’s first dabble into the world of design, where he’s interpreting the genre through a display of his recent work, stuff that he’s never shown to the public before, and pieces commissioned solely for this show. In New York, Germany… everywhere really, the man is a massive deal, known for his ground-breaking conceptual art and then, almost equally, for what he gets up to when he’s not doing that: his life-long slog with Chinese authorities in standing up for human rights and against censorship.

Making Sense isn’t Ai Weiwei’s first rodeo in London; he’s been in the capital many times before where his work most notably has been displayed up on the bright lights of Piccadilly Circus’ LED boards; in a retrospective at the Royal Academy of Arts; and at the Tate Modern, where his legendary Sunflowers Seeds piece (made up of 10 tonnes of handcrafted porcelain seed replicas) managed to pull in tens of thousands of visitors. In general, his career portfolio – sculptures, photos, documentaries installations – all ties in with his battle against social and political issues, and Making Sense tries to, well, make sense of materialism. It’s a ‘meditation on value – on histories and skills that have been ignored or erased’, all the while taking inspiration from the artist’s interest with ancient Chinese artefacts.

And, er, flipping the bird.


NOTE: Ai Weiwei: Making Sense is at the Design Museum from 7th April – 30th July 2023. Tickets cost £15, and you can purchase them on the website right HERE.

The Design Museum | 224-238 Kensington High Street, W8 6AG

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Ai Weiwei: Making Sense

224-238 Kensington High Street, Kensington, W8 6AG