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A tapestry of Marilyn Monroe by Andy Warhol is on display to the public for the first time in the UK as part of "Love Is Enough," an exhibition exploring the similarities between William Morris and Andy Warhol curated by Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller; at Modern Art Oxford from December 6th until 8th March 2015.

The work was presented by Charles Slatkin Galleries in 1968 as part of the "American Tapestries" exhibition, in which the gallery invited a group of contemporary artists to submit designs for tapestries. Warhol gave this Marilyn design, which was hand woven into a woolen tapestry for the exhibition.

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Wednesday, 11 June 2014 11:43

British Folk Art Goes on View at Tate Britain

In this country, we don’t really go in for folk art – or at least, not in the way America does. Yes, there’s a collection of folk art on display at Compton Verney and another at the American Museum in Bath, but mostly it’s shown in local and regional museums. There’s nothing here on the scale or importance of the 150,000 works of art in the Shelburne Museum in Vermont or the American Folk Art Museum in New York City.

British condescension towards the whole subject was encapsulated in Jeremy Deller’s and Alan Kane’s insufferably smug installation Folk Archive, a personal collection of objects that served to illustrate for a metropolitan elite what the common folk like to do in their spare time. Had these two conceptual artists not made the blindingly obvious point that that the paraphernalia of Morris dancing and effigies of the Pope and Guy Fawkes reflect something or other about the nation’s collective unconscious, such folk artefacts would never have been allowed to pollute the sacred grove of high culture that is Tate Britain.

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Although major figures in the British art world including Tate director Nicholas Serota, filmmaker Danny Boyle, and artist Jeremy Deller have voiced their opposition, the council of the Borough of Tower Hamlets in London’s East End decided on Wednesday to sell Henry Moore’s Draped Seated Woman. In addition to the big name opponents, more than 1,500 signed a petition against the sale in just a few days.

Completed in 1957, Moore sold the bronze sculpture to the London County Council in 1960 for a fraction of its worth. When the sale was made, Moore and the now defunct London Council agreed that the statue would be on view permanently near a housing project. When the project was leveled in the late 1990s, Draped Seated Woman was moved to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Lutfur Rahman, the mayor of the Tower Hamlets, blamed the government’s severe budget cuts for leaving him with little choice in the matter. The sculpture is expected to bring in about $32 million when it goes to auction in early 2013.

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