Call for the release of Ai Weiwei

Call for the Release of Ai WeiWei - SIGN THE PETITION

On April 3, internationally acclaimed Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was detained at the Beijing airport while en route to Hong Kong, and his papers and computers were seized from his studio compound.  

We members of the international arts community express our concern for Ai’s freedom and disappointment in China’s reluctance to live up to its promise to nurture creativity and independent thought, the keys to “soft power” and cultural influence. 

Our institutions have some of the largest online museum communities in the world. We have launched this online petition to our collective millions of Facebook fans and Twitter followers.  By using Ai Weiwei’s favored medium of “social sculpture,” we hope to hasten the release of our visionary friend.

Richard Armstrong, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation
and Alexandra Munroe, Samsung Senior Curator, Asian Art
Juan Ignacio Vidarte, Director General, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao,
and Deputy Director and Chief Officer for Global Strategies, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
Glenn Lowry, Director, The Museum of Modern Art, New York
Sir Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate and Chris Dercon, Director, Tate Modern
Kaywin Feldman, President, Association of Art Museum Directors and Director
and President, Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Yongwoo Lee, President, The Gwangju Biennale Foundation
Michael Govan, Director, Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Vishakha Desai, President and Melissa Chiu, Vice President of Global Arts, Asia Society
Jim Cuno, President and Director, Art Institute of Chicago
Julián Zugazagoitia, Director, Nelson Atkins Museum, Kansas City
Ann Philbin, Director, Hammer Museum, University of California, Los Angeles
Olga Viso, Director, Walker Art Center
Alfred Pacquement, Director, Musée national d’art moderne/Centre de création industrielle, Paris
Arnold Lehman, Director, Brooklyn Museum
Jill Medvedow, Director, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston
Julia Peyton-Jones, Director and Hans Ulrich Obrist, Co-director of Exhibitions and Programmes
and Director of International Projects, Serpentine Gallery, London

Poul Erik Tøjner, Director, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark
Nathalie Bondil, Director and Chief Curator, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Neal Benezra, Director, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Tony Ellwood, Director, and Suhanya Raffel, Deputy Director, Queensland Art Gallery, Australia
Thomas W. Lentz, Elizabeth and John Moors Cabot Director, Harvard Art Museums
Ann Goldstein, Director, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam
Apinan Poshynanda, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre Foundation, Bangkok, Thailand
Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Artistic Director, dOCUMENTA (13) and Bernd Leifeld, CEO, documenta
Manray Hsu, Founding Director, Taipei Contemporary Art Center
Holly Hotchner, Nanette L. Laitman Director, Museum of Arts and Design,
New York

→ Read the full story of Ai Weiwei’s detention and follow the news on The Guardian.

→ In December 2010, we’ve shown you the story behind Ai Weiwei’s Sunflower Seeds exhibition at Tate Modern.

Google Zetgeist 2010: Year in Review