Chinese activist and artist, Ai Wei Wei has set up a studio on the Greek island of Lesbos to make art that addresses the recent refugee crisis. In an interview with the Guardian, Ai Wei Wei said: “As an artist, I have to relate to humanity’s struggles ... I never separate these situations from my art.”
Lesbos is the nearest point of entry to the European Union for refugees coming from Syria and Iraq. In recent months the island’s population has more than quadrupled in size as the migrants land on the shores. Ai has praised the residents of the island for their generous response to the refugees, referring to them as tolerant and helpful.
The studio, which Ai will run with his students, will become a kind of memorial for all the refugees who lost their lives crossing the sea and for the countless whose futures are still uncertain.
These images are from Ai Wei Wei’s Instagram account.