Director of Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry Alison Klayman hit the Colbert Report last night to talk about the Chinese artist’s arrest and his current situation. Click through for the video clip.

Colbert’s interview kicks off with a short intro to Ai Weiwei. Klayman explains that the trouble really started when Ai persisted in investigating the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake, connecting the collapse of school and the death of school children to government corruption.

“In America we know to ignore artists,” Colbert laughs, “serious artists are a complete joke. Why over there do they take him so seriously?” “Maybe because he doesn’t take himself so seriously,” Klayman responds, “he knows how to connect to people, he has a huge amount of followers online.” And that’s what the Chinese government is worried about.

Check out the video below, or see it on Comedy Central’s website.

The Colbert ReportMon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Alison Klayman
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog Video Archive
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogVideo Archive
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogVideo Archive


  • In other news, Klayman’s Kickstarter-based fundraiser for the film has more than doubled its expected amount — it raised over $46,000 on a $20,000 goal.
  • Robin Peckham offers his own reading of the cultural moment, I’m assuming referring to the shorter, newsier Ai Weiwei docs that we’ve seen around:

Kyle Chayka

Kyle Chayka was senior editor at Hyperallergic. He is a cultural critic based in Brooklyn and has contributed to publications including ARTINFO, ARTnews, Modern Painters, LA Weekly,...