Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Love is Enough: Warhol and Morris

The subjects of this exhibition are an odd couple by any definition. Cathy Lomax's verdict: less chalk and cheese, more green and pleasant consumerism.

Separated by time, country and ideology, Warhol and Morris are seemingly a very disparate pair. But what is interesting about this show at Modern Art Oxford, which was thoughtfully curated by Jeremy Deller, is how many similarities they actually have. 

Key to this is the all-encompassing ideologies that both men were driven by. Morris and his group of collaborators, which included pre Raphaelite painters Burne-Jones and Rossetti, shared a vision of a pre industrial-revolution society built on craftsmanship and an appreciation of the beauty of natural forms. Morris was a socialist who wanted to create rewarding environments for his workers and famously said, ‘you should have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful’ – he created all manner of decorative objects including paintings and tapestries.