DisplacementSeen Beyond

Ai Weiwei Covers ‘Gangnam Style’

“Gangnam Style,” a music video by a South Korean rapper known as PSY with more than 530 million views on YouTube, has been “remixed and redone by motivated fans” around the globe. Wednesday, October 24, Ai Weiwei, the Chinese dissident and artist, joined in, uploading his own cover version of the rap video to YouTube.

The artist, who mimics the mock horse-riding dance moves of the original while wearing handcuffs in his remix, calls his version “Grass-Mud Horse Style,” a reference to a Chinese Internet meme that employs a pun on an obscene phrase to mock government censorship of the Web. The grass-mud horse is “a mythical creature whose name, in Chinese, sounds very much like an especially vile obscenity.” Chinese bloggers invented the alpaca-like creature to demonstrate the absurdity of censorship by embedding foul language in an innocent-looking video for a children’s song about its adventures.

YouTube is blocked in China, but the remix was also uploaded to Chinese video-sharing sites like Tudou, where a lot of people viewed it before it was removed by censors.

Ai Weiwei’s comments: “Our happiness is constantly being taken away from us, our homes demolished, we are always controlled, passports can be taken away from us, and all these can affect our happiness,” the artist said. “However, every morning we have the opportunity to give others something to laugh about. Laughter is important.”

I am sorry, unfortunately this video is blocked in Germany

Thomas Büsch

Filmmaker, Founding Member and Secretary General of diyalog, promotion of cultural exchange with Turkey. Since 2012 he is also project manager of InEnArt.

Leave a Reply