Having released his English Magic EP on The Vinyl Factory last year, Jeremy Deller brings his Biennale show from Venice to Walthamstow for the first of a three part tour of the country.
Turner-prize winning artist Jeremy Deller is to bring his show-stopping English Magic exhibition at last year’s Venice Biennale home for the first time, with the first of a three leg exhibition tour opening at William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow, east London next week. Visualised as a Poseidon-like giant hurling Roman Abramovich’s super-yacht into the sea in one of the most striking images of Deller’s exhibition, William Morris is back at the centre of Deller’s work, with the gallery set to host the ten week show.
Accompanied by a stirring soundtrack in which Deller conducted the London-based Trinidadian steel band The Melodians in covering three tracks from opposing corners of English musical history – David Bowie’s ‘The Man Who Sold The World’, Ralph Vaughn Williams”Symphony in D minor’ and A Guy Called Gerald’s acid house anthem ‘Voodoo Ray’ – the artist’s English Magic film will also be on display, evoking the diverse urban and pastoral landscapes that have shaped the country’s national identity. The latter track has since been remixed by Optimo who recast the whimsical, steel band cover as a jutting acid house banger in its own right, copies of which you can order here.
Released as a three-track EP by The Vinyl Factory, in both regular and special editions, English Magic has proved an extension of Deller’s long-standing fascination with working class music culture – whether expressed through brass bands or acid house – as was on show at his recent collaboration with Warp Records at Tate Britain to celebrate his 1997 mind map work A History Of The World. This question of society and class so prevalent in Deller’s work also explains the connection he feels with Morris, latterly most renowned for his chintzy wallpaper designs.
As Deller explains to the Telegraph: “For me William Morris is a fascinating character who wore his heart on his sleeve, mixing politics and art in a way no one has managed to since…Morris lived through a tumultuous period and tried to make sense of the industrial revolution in his work – he had about 10 different careers.”
Jeremy Deller’s English Magic will be on show at William Morris Gallery between 18th January and 30th March, before visiting Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and Turner Contemporary, Margate later in the year. Click here for more info and here to order signed limited edition copies of Deller’s English Magic EP from The Vinyl Factory shop.
Watch our film charting the progress of English Magic from Abbey Road studios to the Venice Biennale below: