Ai Weiwei's Release

As Asia Society Museum prepares to open an exhibition June 29 of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s photographs, we welcome news of his release from detention.

“This has positive implications not just for Ai Weiwei personally as we are concerned for his health and well-being, but also for international perceptions of China,” said Asia Society Museum Director Melissa Chiu. “As an artist, his work stood for individual expression and we hope his release has delivered a new promise of creative potential for him and other artists there."

Chinese state media reported today that Ai was released on bail after having been detained since April 3 on charges of “economic crimes.”

“This is very welcome news,” said Orville Schell, Director of Asia Society’s Center on U.S.-China Relations. “The release is certainly going to ease tensions, facilitate closer cultural relations and hopefully help remove some of the impediments to closer political Sino-US ties. Hopefully it will also enhance our bilateral ability to solve some really urgent problems that jointly confront us.”

Starting June 29, the Asia Society Museum in New York will feature an exhibition of Ai Weiwei photographs taken during his decade in New York City from 1983-1993. The 227-image exhibition marks the first time Ai's New York Photographs series is being shown outside of China.

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