Ai Weiwei belongs to the first generation of artists in China that was able to create 'experimental' (Conceptual) art after the Cultural Revolution. In the 1980s Ai lived illegally in New York, surrounded by the American art that would help him to marry theory with politics in his own work. A Ton of Tea brings together many of Ai's interests in a post-Minimal and richly scented giant cube of tea. The apparent simplicity of form and material makes reference to post-war art history and globalisation, through the humble substance of tea, China's oldest export. Historically, for easy transportation, tea was compressed into blocks using a tea press.
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: Fine Art
: sculpture: conceptual
: A Ton of Tea
: WEIWEI, Ai
: one cubic metre ton of compressed and richly scented pu-erh tea, one of an edition of three; in this work the artist makes reference to post-war art history, specifically minimalism, and globalisation through the humble substance of tea, China's oldest export; historically, tea was compressed into blocks using a tea press, for easy transportation
On Display at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Gallery 5
: Art Fund International
: 2007: [Other - Catalogue]
: Given by the Art Fund under Art Fund International 2011.