Stockholm Impact Award designed by Ai Weiwei
The Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has designed the prize sculpture of Stockholm Impact Award, which will be awarded for the first time during Stockholm International Film Festival 2015.
Stockholm Film Festival is proud to present the prize sculpture of Stockholm Impact Award made by Ai Weiwei. The prize is not only beautiful; it has a political meaning as well. Attached to the prize is following text written by Ai Weiwei:
Grass is the most common and ignorable part of our landscape but it covers everywhere and never stops growing. Grass is small, fragile and flexible, yet it is strong and persistent when being stepped on. The award design is one segment of grass made of indestructible spikes. It also refers a central theme in Ai’s recent work, Grass Mud Horse. Because of a similar pronunciation, the word “grass” in China has become a tongue-in-cheek substitute for the f-word. The Chinese character for grass is “cao” and can be found in words “caochangdi”, the district in Beijing, which houses Ai’s studio, and “caonima” which means alpaca. Over the past several years, the alpaca has become the face of “grass mud horse” a popular Chinese internet meme. Pronounced roughly the same way as a common obscenity, the “grass mud horse” has become a widespread symbol of defiance. Ai Weiwei embraces the “grass mud horse” as a vehicle to prod the government while underscoring the essential absurdity of its systematic censorship.
Stockholm Impact Award is a collaboration between the Stockholm Film Festival and the City of Stockholm with the purpose to support headstrong visionaries who reflect our contemporary world. The prize of 1 million SEK is intended as a support for the further work and development of new film projects.
It is the third year in a row that Stockholm Film Festival is collaborating with the Chinese artist. Last year he created two ice sculptures of the lions guarding The Forbidden City in Beijing. The year before that Ai Weiwei sent the art piece “The Chair for Nonattendance” to visualize his absence as a member of Stockholm Film Festival’s jury.
Ai Weiwei is considered one of the most influential and subversive contemporary artists. His art has been exhibited at art galleries and museums all over the world, and challenges international political discussions on freedom of speech.
Christina Wenger, press manager
Photo: Carla Orrego Veliz
The 26th Stockholm International Film Festival November 11-22, 2015
Stockholm International Film Festival started in 1990 and is today one of the leading competitive film festivals in Europe. The festival takes place every year in November with more than 200 films from more than 60 countries.
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