Subscribe to Breaking News emails

You have successfully subscribed to the Breaking News email.

Subscribe today to be the first to to know about breaking news and special reports.

#Gunleg: Chinese Artist Ai Weiwei Sparks New Social Media Meme

 / Updated 
This picture taken on November 16, 2011 shows Chinese artist Ai Weiwei exercising in a car park in Beijing.AFP/Getty Images

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei sparked a new social media meme last week when he posted an Instagram photo of himself holding his leg as though it were a gun — a move he later explained was a statement on the use of force to fight terrorism. "People from all over the world have been experiencing panic because of terrorist attacks such as 9/11 and problems such as the existence of weapons," Ai told The Associated Press Monday. "Power is being overused in the name of counterterrorism," he added.

Instagram users followed suit, posting photos of their own "guns," often using the hashtag #gunleg. Ai, who is notorious for using art to criticize the Chinese government, promoted dozens of these images on his personal account.

IN-DEPTH

SOCIAL

—Becky Bratu, with The Associated Press

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
MORE FROM news

Have feedback?

How likely are you to recommend nbcnews.com to a friend or colleague?

0 = Very unlikely
10 = Very likely
Please select answer

Is your feedback about:

Please select answer

Leave your email if you’d like us to respond. (Optional)

Please enter a valid email address

Thank you!

Your feedback has been sent out. Please enjoy more of our content.

We appreciate your help making nbcnews.com a better place.