ai weiwei is one of today's leading artists and his recent detention by the chinese authorities has been making headlines for months. but did you know that before he rose to prominence both as an artist and political activist, he lived in a tiny apartment in the east village, and that he was a prominent member of a community of expatriate chinese artists and intellectuals in the neighbourhood’s then burgeoning avant-garde scene? interestingly, the asia society now presents an exhibition of 227 photographs taken by the artist that capture the history, culture, and atmosphere of 1980s new york from his unique perspective. mind you, it's the first time that the photo series is shown outside china [on through aug 14]. location: 725 park avenue [upper east].
© ai weiwei - outside tompkins square park