On Wednesday, December 12th at the MoMa, REACT to FILM and The Common Good at presented a screening of the Academy Award short-listeddocumentary “Ai WeiWei: Never Sorry.”
“Ai WeiWei: Never Sorry” is the inside story of a political dissident for the digital age who inspires global audiences and blurs the boundaries of art and politics. The screening was followed by a Q&A with director Alison Klayman.
Artist Ai Weiwei was born in Beijing in 1957, the year his father Ai Qing, a revolutionary poet, was exiled by the Communist party. The family returned to Beijing in 1975.After studying at Parsons school of design in New York, he helped design the 2008 Olympics Bird’s Nest stadium; other works include Sunflower Seeds.
Openly critical of China’s stance on human rights and democracy, he was arrested in 2011, imprisoned for two months and investigated for tax evasion. Last month he guest-edited the New Statesman. He is married to the artist Lu Qing, and has a son.
ABOUT THE FILM
Ai Weiwei is China’s most famous international artist, and its most outspoken domestic critic. Against a backdrop of strict censorship and an unresponsive legal system, Ai expresses himself and organizes people through art and social media. In response, Chinese authorities have shut down his blog, beat him up, bulldozed his newly built studio, and held him in secret detention.AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY is the inside story of a dissident for the digital age who inspires global audiences and blurs the boundaries of art and politics. First-timedirector Alison Klaymangained unprecedented access to Ai while working as a journalist in China. Her detailed portrait provides a nuanced exploration of contemporary China and one of its most compelling public figures.
The film has a 91 minute runtime.
“A galvanizing documentary; An intimate portrait of the artist.”
“Alison Klayman’s documentary is one of the most engagingly powerful movies of the year.”
“Watching”Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry” is like experiencing a thrilling unfinished symphony: The story is enthralling, but it’s not over, and there’s no telling where it’s going. Which makes what we see on screen all the more involving.” – Kenneth Turan
“Documentarian Alison Klayman’s prismatic portrait of the artist, ‘Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry,’ is a useful primer, though it also focuses a bit more on the activism than on the art. That’s probably because, for its subject, the line between the two is so indistinct.”