Frederik Meijer Gardens presents Ai Weiwei

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Ai Weiwei presents art at Meijer Gardens.

By Amy Wheeler – Collegiate Staff

Frederik Meijer Gardens is currently displaying Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s first Midwest art exhibit.

The exhibit, called Ai Weiwei at Meijer Gardens: Natural State, is ongoing and will be on display until Aug. 20.

Weiwei is a worldwide popular artist and that is why Frederik Meijer Gardens is hosting his exhibit longer than they would any other exhibit.

“We knew he would be immensely popular so we wanted to give some additional time,” said FMG Public Relations Manager John VanderHaagen. “We’ve got over 30 pieces.”

These pieces are made with multiple mediums including video installments, wallpapers, ceramics, bamboo and silk.

“We selected the works in conjunction with Ai Weiwei and his studio,” VanderHaagen said. “We wanted pieces that were made from natural materials or that kind of talked about the relationship between nature and his work or the state in his work.”

“He is one of the most popular living artists right now,” VanderHaagen said. “He’s never shown in Michigan. He’s never shown anywhere else in the upper Midwest and this is his first exhibition in a botanical garden or sculpture park so kind of a major exhibition for not only Meijer Gardens but for Michigan and the Midwest as whole.”
The student admission price is $11 and the exhibit is open from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. Monday, 9 p.m. – 9 p.m. Tuesday, and 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesday – Saturday. Frederik Meijer Gardens is located at 1000 E. Beltline Ave NE in Grand Rapids. Additional hours and ticket prices can be found online.

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