Ai Weiwei’s “Gangnam Style” parody has been blocked in China after the video received thousands of hits, the Agence France-Presse reported today.
The Chinese dissident artist filmed the four-minute spoof video on Wednesday and uploaded it that night to the Chinese version of video-sharing website YouTube.
It was an instant hit, but China’s army of censors moved quickly to block the video, the AFP said.
"We only filmed for a bit over 10 minutes but we used a whole day to edit, and eventually put it online at midnight," Ai told Reuters.
"After we had uploaded it, a few hours later ... we found that a lot of people, tens of thousands, had already watched it. Now, in China, it has already been totally removed, deleted entirely, and you can't see it in China.”
Wearing a bright pink T-shirt under a black jacket, the pudgy artist dances around his Beijing studio with friends and employees to the audio of the catchy song, Time magazine reported.
Some shots from the original video by South Korean rapper Psy have been spliced into the parody, which also shows Ai dancing with handcuffs – symbolic of Beijing's efforts to silence him.
The artist told the Associated Press that he thought the video could give the Chinese public something to laugh about.
“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," Ai said.
"However, every morning we have the opportunity to give others something to laugh about. Laughter is important."
Ai, an outspoken government critic, has been a constant thorn in the side of Beijing.
The highly acclaimed artist spent three months in jail without charge last year and is now barred from leaving the country. He is currently fighting tax evasion charges.
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If you haven't seen it yet, check out Ai's version of "Gangnam Style" below.