Paris department store Le Bon Marché is giving carte blanche to Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei for his first-ever exhibition in a retail space.

by Team Paris Social Diary, photography by Courtesy | 17 January, 2016


Le Bon Marché host Ai Weiwei‘s “Er Xi“, first exhibition in Paris.


jLegendary animal,  bamboo objetcs hanging in the atrium and mythological figures installed in the windows: chinese contemporary artist Ai Weiwei exhibits his works at Le Bon Marché in Paris, the first in a department store, in order  to meet “another public“.

Creating a display in a department store, “is to inspire other media and to meet another public as broad as that of a museum, but that just does not a priori for art,” says Ai Weiwei.


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Paris Hilton and Ai Weiwei at Ai Weiwei‘s “Er Xi” first exhibition in Paris.


“This experience allows me to design an exhibition in another way, with different constraints than a museum or gallery.”
For this exhibition named “Er Xi” (“Air de jeux” – until February 20th), it was inspired by Shanhaijing, the Book of Mountains and Seas, a set of popular narratives imagined in ancient China and back more than two thousand years.



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Le Bon Marché host Ai Weiwei‘s “Er Xi“, first exhibition in Paris

“I was told these tales, like all children of the country, whatever the political periods, as it is primarily an oral tradition,” said the artist, who lives in Berlin.
If the theme of the exhibition is inspired by the tales and legends, the technique is borrowed from traditional Chinese kites: bamboo sticks braided gives shape to the structure which is then dressed in a white silk paper for most works.