Whatever you’re thoughts on the ongoing refugee crisis may be, you would certainly need to possess a heart of stone not to feel compassion for those fleeing the war-torn country of Syria. One person who has been overtly critical of Europe’s response to the situation is controversial artist Ai Weiwei.
Over weekend the world-renowned Chinese artist opened an installation at the Berlin Concert Hall where he wrapped 14,000 orange life jackets around the pillars of the venue's main entrance. Recently he setup a studio on the Greek island of Lesbos, a main entry point for refugees who are coming in from Turkey, where he started collecting their discarded life jackets.
This isn’t Ai Weiwei’s first time depicting the harrowing experiences of refugees, his most recent project prior to this involved him reenacting the heartbreaking photo of the drowned Syrian child Alan Kurdi, an image that was seen around the world. Additionally he closed his ‘Ruptures’ Exhibition in Copenhagen in protest of Denmark’s law allowing the government to seize asylum seekers’ valuables.
According to the International Organisation for Migration more than 3,700 migrants have died trying to cross the Mediterranean last year. Many of whom are trying to reach Germany where last year they registered more than 1 million migrants.