'Ai Weiwei: The Liberty of Doubt' at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge
21 February 2022
Ai Weiwei's solo exhibition 'The Liberty of Doubt' is now open at Kettle's Yard gallery in Cambridge, UK. The exhibition explores notions of truth, authenticity and value, as well as globalisation, the coronavirus pandemic and the current geopolitical crisis. Through 13 of his own artworks and 14 antiquities, Ai reflects upon the liberty in the West, in contrast to China and other authoritarian regimes, to question truth and authority, express doubt and seek transparency in political matters. However, in relation to art appreciation, the Chinese have a long tradition of a more fluid and less fixed view in relation to authenticity than is the case in the West, often valuing the act of copying. This will be the first time the artist has juxtaposed historic Chinese objects with his own works.
Ai bought the antiquities included in the show at an auction in Cambridge in 2020. Some of the auction pieces acquired by the artist are thought to date from the Northern Wei (386 – 534 CE) and Tang (618 – 907 CE) dynasties, while others have been identified as counterfeits, later copies of original works. A number of recent films made by the artist will also be screened on each day of the exhibition’s run – Coronation (2020), Cockroach (2020) and Human Flow (2017) – while two Fairytale Chairs (2007) will be placed in the Kettle’s Yard House for visitors to use.
Find further information via Kettle's Yard.
Image © Ai Weiwei, courtesy Kettle's Yard. Photography by Jo Underhill.