As the EU referendum draws ever nearer, people are doing what they can to swing voters’ minds one way or the other. For the most part, artists and designers are overwhelmingly erring on the side of encouraging the UK to vote to remain – Wolfgang Tillmans designed a series of pro-Remain posters, while other artists collaborated to create works advocating the benefits of European unity.
Jeremy Deller’s objective with his artwork is fairly clear and it’s an argument that we’re seeing a lot as the debate rumbles on – do you really want to come out of the side of people like Nigel Farage, Katie Hopkins, Boris Johnson and....Vladimir Putin.
Deller’s piece uses an existing shot taken on one of Putin’s propaganda photo shoots – where he may be snapped “in the moment” with no top on, impressively muscular, catching big fish, testing guns or beating someone at judo. The photo Deller has used appears to have been taken in the Khemchik River in 2007, except in this amended version Deller has placed an “I Love Brexit” tattoo on his chest.
“Putin would love the UK to leave the EU,” says Deller. “It makes the world a more uncertain place.” Head here for more artists’ responses to the referendum debate.