Ai Weiwei porcelain river crab installation He Xie at the Royal Academy of Arts in London

Three thousand porcelain river crabs make up an installation by Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. The exhibit is called “He Xie” which means river crabs but the word has the same Chinese pronunciation and spelling as the word for harmonious. Harmonious is internet slang in China for censorship.

6 Replies to “Ai Weiwei’s River Crabs”

  1. They are very lifelike aren’t they? Do you remember Ai Weiwei’s sunflower seeds installation – there must have been hundreds of thousands of them, if not millions, all hand painted?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess it could be said to be unsettling in a number of ways – the way that a naturally occurring infestation or plague of creatures might be, or an accumulation of freshly caught or harvested creatures might be, and of course the political representation.


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