Ai Weiwei’s HUMAN FLOW Opens in the Bay Area [REVIEW]
20 Oct, 2017
Ai Weiwei, Chinese contemporary artist, activist and film director is an iconic figure in the global social, political and cultural landscape. Born in Beijing, China on August 28, 1957, Ai lived in the United States for a period of time (Philadelphia, San Francisco and New York) where he studied at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of California, Berkeley and briefly at Parsons School of Design. He collaborated as an artistic consultant with Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron on the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 Olympics. As a political activist, he has been outspoken and critical about the Chinese Government’s stance on democracy and human rights. And as a result of his public disapproval, he was detained by Chinese officials and held for 81 days without any official charges being filed.
His controversial statements regarding the state of social and political affairs are expressed through visual art. The director’s newest piece and public statement is in the form of the documentary film, HUMAN FLOW (2017), a Amazon Studios release, which had it’s world premiere at the 74th Venice Film Festival and was an Official Selection of the 44th Telluride Film Festival, as well as the 40th Mill Valley Film Festival.
Watch the HUMAN FLOW Trailer:
The focus of the film is the international refugee crisis as it has become a pressing global issue. There have been a total of over 65 million people displaced around the world, who are being forced from their homes to escape famine, climate change and war. It is being called the greatest human displacement since World War II. HUMAN FLOW takes us inside the crisis and into the actual refugee camps housing those who have fled their homelands. Over one eventful year and 23 countries, Ai Weiwei’s movie intimately and touchingly follows these human stories capturing the journey, personal lives, challenges, as well as emotions of those traveling great distances to find solace, safety, shelter and justice. HUMAN FLOW raises questions that will define this century regarding whether our global society will emerge from the immense fear, isolation and self-interest that has been dominating the world and instead, follow a new course of openness, freedom and human respect.
See HUMAN FLOW at Landmark City in San Francisco and Landmark Shattuck in Berkeley beginning today, October 20th.
Director: Ai Weiwei
Producers: Ai Weiwei, Chin-chin Yap, Heino Deckert
Executive Producers: Andy Cohen, Jeff Skoll, Diane Weyermann