Ai Weiwei has expressed an interest in taking up a teaching post at the University of Fine Arts in Berlin. It was offered to him during his house arrest three years ago. This would allow him to spend more time with his six-year-old son, who has lived in the city with his mother for over a year.
When asked if he would seek asylum in Germany, Mr Ai 57 said: “No, I will not. It’s not that I don’t have a reason to, but rather I think if they let me out, that means there is also a certain kind of trust there.” “Of course, it’s dangerous. I will not show I am a person who is scared. I do sometimes feel quite scared, but still I think we all need trust… when you have a certain kind of trust you bear some kind of responsibility and you take certain kinds of consequences. This is always related.”
He also said that after being under constant surveillance he felt free – like the sensation of a horse galloping across fields after long being tethered to a carriage. “It is a sense of release because it was such a burden,” said Ai, who arrived in Germany a week ago.
“Everything in my past had a sense of somebody who was watching, somebody who was making potent decisions about your life. So, of course, once I’m out, that condition is completely gone and I feel quite released.”
Ai said, ‘I love Berlin’ “I will talk to them,” said Ai. “I will try to see if we can build up a new way of teaching, or to teach new topics, because I think art is changing. “You know, it’s no longer just forms or shapes, but rather related to philosophy or socio-political views. So I think that’s a very interesting direction, and it is a direction I am interested to share with students.” He added, “I would try to establish something here, spend more time here”. “I just had a one-hour walk. I feel so comfortable. Like, it’s my city.”