The Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller is mounting a new curated exhibition at Modern Art Oxford, in December. Bringing together rarely seen works by William Morris and Andy Warhol, Deller’s ‘Love is Enough’ will examine the prolific careers of these two figures, each of whom developed an artistic practice and a conceptual framework that helped to define the centuries in which they lived.
The exhibition draws together works from public and private collections across the UK and the USA. They include the epic and rarely seen Holy Grail tapestries completed by Morris in 1896, a selection of Warhol’s iconic silkscreens and archival material from the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, including a signed photograph of Shirley Temple posted to a thirteen-year old Andy from the actress in 1941. Jeremy Deller said: “For me, these two figures have so much in common, not least their tendency to be contradictory. Morris railed against capitalism and yet he established a shop in central London bearing his family name, and Warhol’s trademark blankness, I think, belies a deeply political artist.”
Jeremy Deller met Andy Warhol in 1986 and spent two weeks at the Factory in New York. Deller began making artworks in the early 1990s, often showing them outside of conventional galleries. In 1993, while his parents were on holiday, he secretly used the family home for an exhibition titled Open Bedroom.
Morris and Warhol both established printmaking businesses and distributed their work through new forms of mass production. Both were natural collaborators who worked with the prominent artists of their time to develop working methods that did much to redefine the artist’s relationship to the studio and factory. Morris achieved this through his mastering of craft techniques and his rejection of industrial processes and Warhol through the activities of the Factory, which often parodied the industrial culture of the mid-late 20th century. Love is Enough will illuminate many points of connectivity within their work, such as publishing and popular culture, notions of empire, nation, mythology, decoration and the artist as brand.
Hedley Swain, Area Director, South East, Arts Council England, said: “Modern Art Oxford’s Love is Enough explores the similarities between these two renowned artists, each of whom made an indelible mark on the cultural landscape of their era. This exhibition – curated by Turner Prize-winning artist, Jeremy Deller – will undoubtedly appeal to a broad national audience whilst ensuring that communities in Oxford and Birmingham have access to great art right on their doorstep.”
Jeremy Deller (b. 1966, London; lives London) studied Art History at the Courtauld Institute and at Sussex University. After meeting Andy Warhol in 1986 he spent two weeks at the Factory in New York. He began making artworks in the early 1990s, often showing them outside of conventional galleries. In 1993, while his parents were on holiday, he secretly used the family home for an exhibition titled Open Bedroom.
Four years later he produced the musical performance Acid Brass with the Williams-Fairey Band, and began making art in collaboration with other people. Deller staged The Battle of Orgreave in 2001, commissioned by Artangel and Channel 4, directed by Mike Figgis, a re-enactment which brought together around 1000 veteran miners and members of historical societies to restage the 1984 clash between miners and police at Orgreave, Yorkshire. In 2004, Deller won the Turner Prize for Memory Bucket (2003), a documentary about Texas.
He has since made a number of documentaries on subjects ranging from exotic wrestler Adrian Street to die-hard international fans of the band Depeche Mode.
In 2009 he undertook a road trip across the US from New York to Los Angeles along with an Iraqi citizen and a US war veteran, towing a car destroyed in a bomb attack in Baghdad. The project, It Is What It Is, was presented at the New Museum, New York; the car is now part of the Imperial War Museum’s Collection. In the same year he staged Procession, in Manchester, involving participants, commissioned floats, choreographed music and performances creating an odd and celebratory spectacle.