Antiquity and life under capitalism coalesce in an edition of glass vases by Ai Weiwei.
Traditional Chinese ceramics have appeared in Ai’s work on numerous occasions, most notably in 1995 when he dropped (and smashed) a priceless Han Dynasty urn on camera. The artist has also adorned similarly-irreplicable urns in paint with the iconic Coca-Cola logo. With such artworks Ai juxtaposes new with old, and artisanal skill with mass manufacture – questioning the value we ascribe to the objects that surround us.
Cast in translucent red glass using an iron mould on Murano – a group of islands in the Venetian Lagoon renowned for glassmaking – the vase encompasses a new juncture for the artist’s ongoing reflections on iconography, repetition and commodification.