Blossom, Hospital

With intricately detailed encrustations of ceramic flowers, Ai transforms the utilitarian fixtures (sinks, toilets, and tubs) in several hospital ward cells and medical offices into fantastical, fragile porcelain bouquets. The profusion of flowers rendered in a cool and brittle material could be understood as an ironic reference to China’s famous Hundred Flowers Campaign of 1956, a brief period of government tolerance of free expression, immediately followed by a severe crackdown against dissent. (Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy)

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