ai Weiwei: Mountains and Seas
Château La Coste
8 April – 18 June 2017
About the exhibition
To mark the completion of the permanent project Ruyi Path, Ai Weiwei has mounted an exhibition at Château La Coste in partnership with Luise Faurschou, that provides a broader sense of the artist’s work and contextualizes the Ruyi Path within his practice. The works exhibited are made using traditionel kite-making techniques that employ bamboo, twine, and silk.
A giant human body is suspended from the ceiling above the exhibition space, entitled Yuyi. Along the walls, there are ten works that refer to creatures in the Chinese mythological texts entiteld the Shanhai jing (Mountains and Seas). Two-dimensional « drawings » float against the wall with suspended three-dimensional scutlpures to create rich friezes of overlaying forms and shadows.
Throughout these compositions, mythical creatures are accomponied by references to Ai Weiwei`s life, his work and art-historical works that have influenced Ai Weiwei. The overall myriad of images poses questions of traditions, rapid modernisation and the role of the artist.
Created just before the summer of 2015, when Ai Weiwei’s passport was returned following his detention and subsequent four years of travel restrictions, the works draw from this turbulent period.
Over the past two years, Ai Weiwei has been developing a project for Château La Coste in partnership with Luise Faurschou, entitled Ruyi Path. It is named after the ceremonial scepter that symbolizes power and good fortune in Chinese folklore. The traditional S-shaped form of this scepter has provided the plan for a new pathway that weaves between the trees of the forest at Château La Coste and connects two ancient routes on the property. Created from historic cobbles salvaged from the recently renovated ports of Marseille, Ruyi Path has given a new life to these stones that so many emigrants and travellers over the years have stood upon when arriving in Europe. Defying categorization, this structure is both sculpture and architecture; traditional and modern.
About Château la Coste
Château La Coste is a vineyard where Wine, Art & Architecture live in harmony. Artists and architects were invited to visit the domain and discover the beauty of Provence. In turn, they were encouraged to choose a place in the landscape that spoke directly to them and were given the freedom to create a work that would live there. Château La Coste will continue to evolve as new projects and installations are developed. Walk at your leisure through wooded hilltops and valleys, alongside olive groves and vine fields, discovering the many installations of contemporary art on your way.
Tracy Emin, Self-portrait: Cat inside a barrel, 2013
Louise Bourgeois, Crouching Spider, 2003
Liam Gillick, Multiplied Resistence Screened, 2010
Tracy Emin, Self-portrait: Cat Inside A Barrel, 2013
Richard Serra, AIX (detail), 2008
Guggi, Calix Meus Inebrians, 2009
Frank Gehry, Pavilion de Musique, 2008
The Tadao Ando Art Centre restaurant welcome you every day. In this wide open luminous space, enjoy lunch at the water's edge accompanied by Château La Coste wines, or sit on the terrace in the late afternoon with a cup of genmaicha tea and watch the sun go down across the vines. The in-house menu highlights seasonal produce from the organic vegetable garden specially designed by Louis Benech. Provençal and Mediterranean dishes are freshly prepared in our kitchen and served throughout the day. In 2017 the luxurious hotel Villa La Coste opened.
Adhering to biodynamic principles, Château la Coste strives to preserve the terroir, protecting its fertility, safeguarding the essence of the soil. The alchemy of blending lives on in a state of the art ‘cuverie’ designed by French architect Jean Nouvel and inaugurated with the grape harvest of 2008. This latest technology ensures the natural expression of the wine and brings new life to a long tradition. In 2009 our wines were given the French organic label “AB” in recognition of the respect shown to the land along with the methods used which are in perfect harmony with nature.
Restaurant de Tadao Ando
Hiroshi Sugimoto, Mathematical model 012 surface of revolution with constant negative curvature, 2010
Alexander Calder, Small crinkly, 1976
All photos by Château la Coste
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