Art Practical Issue 40

My review of Under Destruction at the Swiss Institute (NYC) is now online in Art Practical.

Also in the current issue, curator Christian L. Frock summarizes responses to Ai Weiwei’s detainment (including mentions of bilingual Free Ai Weiwei posters and the Love the Future graphic.

Hats off to the Art Practical editorial team, who celebrate the release of their 40th issue today. In two years the publication has grown from a kernel of an idea to a presence in the SF art community, and I am so honored to be part of it.

Art & Development

Free Ai Weiwei / Love the Future graphic available

A few days ago, the NY Times reported that detained dissident artist Ai Weiwei was allowed a brief visit from his wife. For concerned citizens around the world who feared the worst over the past 40+ days in which Ai’s whereabouts and welfare were unknown, the fact that the artist is alive and appeared as though he hadn’t been tortured are reliefs.

Still, Ai and dozens of others have been illegally detained in a wave of repression due to the Chinese government’s fear of a Jasmine Revolution, an Arab Spring-style uprising in China. Chinese authorities are not even following their own legal procedures—Ai has not been formally charged—nor he has not been permitted counsel.

The moral and legal imperatives to pressure the authorities to free Ai Weiwei and all political prisoners remain.

As Aimee LeDuc points out on Bay Citizen, San Francisco’s forthcoming art fairs offer an opportunity for concerned art community members to voice their opposition to repression. Inspired by her call to action and Visible Alternative’s initiatives, I’m making available a graphic for printing, iron-on t-shirts, and any other creative uses. Love the Future is a code phrase for “Ai Weiwei,” a censored phrase on the web in China, as well as an affirmation of progress and political change.

Love the Future

Love the Future

Download a high-res JPG for flyers, or flipped high-res JPGs for iron-ons. (To save the file: Mac users, control+click; PC users, right-click.)

Want to make it bigger? Download a PDF (right-reading or flipped).

Avery makes inkjet iron-on sheets.

For more info please see


Love the Future

Love the Future/Chinese Cosulate, New York City; Studies in Perspective after Ai Weiwei('s disappearance)

Love the Future/Chinese Cosulate, New York City; Studies in Perspective after Ai Weiwei('s disappearance)

In China, the state tightly controls the internet. Chinese citizens can’t access Google, Facebook, or Twitter. Any searches with Ai Weiwei’s name are terminated, as the artist explained in a prescient interview with Dan Rather shot just 10 days before his unlawful detention and disappearance on April 3.

To skirt censors, Chinese citizens have adopted the code-phrase, Love the Future (愛未來), which is similar to Ai’s name (艾未未) in Chinese.

“Love the Future” has many interpretations. It’s an affirmation, a progressive rallying cry, an admonishment to the repressive Chinese government to fear not its own courageous activists, a call to change.

The above photo is inspired by this declaration, Ai’s courage, and his Studies in Perspective photographs.

Love the Future! Release Ai Weiwei and all unlawfully detained activists immediately.