Born 1966, London, England
Lives and works in London
Jeremy Deller conceived Breaking News (Dedicated to Peter Watkins) specifically
for Carnegie Museum of Art's miniature rooms. This site-specific work juxtaposes
tiny period rooms and battle re-enactments contemporaneous to their furnishings and
architecture. Peter Watkins is an influential but lesser-known British filmmaker
whose films on the subjects of war, politics, and art are exemplary of so-called
"documentary reconstruction," in which staged footage of historical events is
interposed with interviews of witnesses to those events. Deller, like Watkins,
aims to expose historical truths in direct and confrontational ways. In this case,
the obvious disjunction of a television in an 18th-century domestic interior is made
even more ironic by the sadly familiar broadcast of bloody conflict. A second work by
Deller is an untitled series of t-shirts and plastic bags, each printed with a quote
from the Old or the New Testament. These objects can be found in the museum's shop.
In both works, Deller reminds us that history is a record of actions rather than simply
a collection of words.
Deller, Jeremy. After the Goldrush. San Francisco: CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, 2002.
–––. The English Civil War Part II: Personal Accounts of the 1984–85 Miner's Strike. London: Artangel, 2002.
–––. Life Is to Blame for Everything. London: Salon 3, 1999.
Hilty, Greg. "4 Real: Jeremy Deller and the Uses of Art." Parkett, no. 60 (2000): 6–14.
Morton, Tom. "Mining for Gold: Tom Morton on Jeremy Deller." Frieze, no. 72 (January 2003): 70–75.
Royal College of Art exhibition
The Globe and Mail article