Class of 2020
In 1995, artist Ai Weiwei created Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn in which he let go of a 2000 year-old ceremonial urn over concrete. The piece was documented and is now often presented in three photos. In the first he is shown holding the urn, the second captures the urn mid-air with his hands in an open position, and in the third the same position remains, but with the urn remnants smashed on the ground. Speaking on the controversial piece, he says, “It’s powerful because someone thinks it’s powerful and invests value in the object.” My piece serves as a tribute to Ai Weiwei’s sentiment on challenging the meaning of value. Although it is insinuated that each hand is in relation to an object, its absence allows for an individual interpretation. Imagining different objects and assigning respective value changes the meaning of the piece; call it interactive.