‘They just want basic human dignity, no bombs, no fear,’ says Chinese artist as he ends exhibition over law allowing valuables to be taken from refugees.
The Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei has closed down his exhibition in Copenhagen in protest at a new law that allows Danish authorities to seize valuables from asylum seekers.
The 58-year-old, who is currently on the Greek island of Lesbos undertaking research on Europe’s refugee crisis, told the Guardian: “My moments with refugees in the past months have been intense. I see thousands come daily, children, babies, pregnant women, old ladies, a young boy with one arm.
“They come with nothing, barefoot, in such cold, they have to walk across the rocky beach. Then you have this news; it made me feel very angry.
“The way I can protest is that I can withdraw my works from that country. It is very simple, very symbolic – I cannot co-exist, I cannot stand in front of these people, and see these policies. It is a personal act, very simple; an artist trying not just to watch events but to act, and I made this decision spontaneously.”