Los Angeles, 17 August 2011, Art Media Agency (AMA).
A Few days ago, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art welcomed a work by Ai Weiwei, entitled Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads.
The piece will be on display from next Saturday to February 2012. Everyone will be able to enjoy the piece for free as it is to be exhibited outside the museum.
Ai Weiwei has recreated the legendary Zodiac clock, designed in the eighteenth century by two European Jesuits serving in the court of the Emperor Qianlong. In 1860, the Yuanming Yuan was ransacked by French and British troops, and the heads were pillaged. Seven of them have since been found: the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, horse, monkey, and boar. The five others remain missing.
Recently, two heads of the fountain–clock sparked international controversy. Beijing demanded that two original heads, auctioned during the 2010 Pierre Bergé / Yves Saint-Laurent sale, be returned.
Ai Weiwei wanted all the heads to be reunited again with his work, bringing life back to the well–known fountain-clock. For this reason, the sculpture will continue to travel around the world: after New York, it will be displayed in Los Angeles before leaving for an other destinations.