FOR-SITE Foundation to host “Ai Weiwei: LEGO Collection Point” at Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture
LEGO Collection Point is part of Ai Weiwei’s ongoing efforts to challenge censorship. In an Instagram post on October 23 Ai announced that LEGO had denied his request for a bulk order of bricks for a new artwork to be shown at the National Gallery of Victoria in Australia, claiming that they “cannot approve the use of LEGO for political works.” Calling LEGO’s decision an act of censorship, Ai’s response triggered a flood of offers of LEGO® bricks from individuals around the world. Inspired by the groundswell of support, Ai later posted on Instagram that he would “make a new work to defend freedom of speech and ‘political art’” using donated LEGO® bricks.
In September 2014, FOR-SITE opened @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz featuring Ai’s now iconic first work rendered in LEGO® bricks, Trace. Including 176 portraits of prisoners of conscience, Trace is composed of 1.2 million LEGO® bricks assembled by 82 volunteers in San Francisco over the course of more than 1,600 hours. Echoing this power of collective participation, Collection Point encourages broad public involvement, and invites participants to reflect on their individual role in defending freedom of expression.
Organized by FOR-SITE in collaboration with Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture (FMCAC), the San Francisco Collection Point location features a 1997 dark green BMW 528i parked at the edge of the Fort Mason Center parking lot, straight past the entrance gate, by the bike racks. LEGO® bricks in any amount and in any shape and color can be deposited through the car’s sunroof every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Donations can also be made by mail to FOR-SITE at 49 Geary Street Suite 205, San Francisco, CA 94108. For Collection Point updates, follow Ai on Instagram and Twitter @aiww.
If you stop by FMCAC to make a donation, be sure to tag a photo using the hashtags #legosforweiwei and #forsite.