Ai Weiwei designed a series of face masks to raise money for COVID-19 relief efforts.

Daria Simone Harper
May 28, 2020 4:43PM, via The New York Times

An Ai Weiwei middle finger printed onto a face mask. Image via Ebay for Charity.

Artist Ai Weiwei has designed a suite of face masks to raise money for various COVID-19 emergency relief efforts. The masks were made available today via eBay’s giving platform, eBay for Charity, and will be on sale through June 27th. Prices range from $50 for a single mask to $300 for a themed set of four, and $1,500 for a collection of 20. All profits from sales of the masks will equally benefit Human Rights Watch, Refugees International, and Doctors Without Borders.

Ai, who’s currently working on a documentary about the pandemic, said the idea to create the masks came to him late one evening while he was making linocut carvings with his son back in April. He printed his signature middle finger design onto a mask, which he then posted on his Instagram, where he was immediately flooded with people asking how they could get one.

The masks depict an assortment of designs in keeping with the artist-activist’s push for human rights and freedom of speech. Along with his rebellious middle-finger mask, his designs also include handcuffs and a surveillance camera. Ai told The New York Times: “I wanted to do something. I didn’t want to just be sitting there and waiting for the time to pass.”

Daria Simone Harper