Press release: Former Turner Prize Winner Jeremy Deller Video Interview

Fri 09 Dec 2011 by Angela_McKay

In a video interview ( with DACS (Design and Artists Copyright Society), Jeremy Deller talks about why aspiring artists shouldn’t take too much notice of other people’s work:

‘Don’t look at what other people are doing and get upset by it… Be willing to change your plans but not necessarily to compromise.’
The video (released the day after the announcement of the 2011 Turner Prize) shows Jeremy discussing his favourite projects as well as more difficult times. He reveals that when he was working on the Battle of Orgreave - the piece of work for which he is best known - was also when he was most struggling for money. This strikes a chord with many artists around the UK, for whom the median salary in 2010 was only £10,000.
Jeremy joins other artists such as Tracey Emin and Stuart Semple who have added their support to the extension of the Artist’s Resale Right which offers important financial support for artists. Almost 2,000 artists have also signed an online petition ( supporting the full implementation of the Right.
The interview shows Deller describing how artists are often the people earning the least money in the art world:
‘The thing is that auction houses make so much money, hundreds of millions on a single sale…obviously that’s not pure profit but they make an incredible amount of money. Much more than virtually any artist, more than any museum has to spend on art so it’s good to put money back to the people who made the works.
Whenever something like this (the Artist’s Resale Right extension) starts, people say, ‘it’s going to end the art world, it’s going to be terrible,’ and you have the auction houses up in arms but it never happens. The art world just carries on and gets bigger and bigger – so it can sustain that. A lot of people can do very well out of the art market and obviously the artists aren’t always the ones doing that.
Since the Artist’s Resale Right was introduced in 2006, artists have been paid nearly £14 million in royalties. The Right entitles artists to a royalty each time their work changes hands through an auction house or gallery. It successfully balances the interests of artists with the interests of the art trade and recognises the on-going stake an artist has in the economic value of their work.
Artist Gavin Turk talks about why he thinks the Right is so important in this video interview and echoes 2011 Turner Prize Winner Martin Boyce’s comments about the financial barriers associated with entering the art world today.
The full implementation of the Right due in January 2012 will see it extended to deceased artists’ families and beneficiaries, providing desperately needed funding for managing an artist’s estate, including the costs of storage, conservation, cataloguing, research, restoration, assessment of provenance, and the identification of fakes.
Deller acknowledges in the interview that he is lucky in being able to do the ‘balancing’ required to make money as an artist but reveals that he still does work that ends up being unpaid or even where he loses money: ‘I do understand how tough it can be… I have been there, I promise’.  
About Jeremy Deller
The online interview can be seen here:
Jeremy Deller won the Turner Prize in 2004.
Jeremy Deller: Joy in People will be on at the Hayward Gallery from Wednesday 22 February 2012 - Sunday 13 May 2012.
For more information please visit:
Jeremy Deller was born in London in 1966 and studied art history at the Courtauld Institute of Art. Collaboration and participation are central to Deller’s work.
About DACS
Established by artists for artists, DACS (the Design and Artists Copyright Society)  is an innovative visual artists’ rights management organisation, representing over 60,000 creative individuals including fine artists, photographers and illustrators from the UK and abroad.
Research recently published by DACS into the Copyright Contracts and Earnings of Visual Creators can be viewed here:
The Gavin Turk interview can be seen here:
About the Artist’s Resale Right
The Right has several mechanisms in place to protect the interests of the art trade including tiered royalty rates ranging from 4% down to 0.25% which are dictated by law, and most significantly, a cap on the royalty an artist can receive on a single sale of €12,500 (approximately £11,000).
About DACS
Over the past five years, as a not-for-profit organisation, DACS has distributed £34.5 million in royalties to visual artists for copyright licensing, Artist’s Resale Right and collective licensing. This represents a direct financial investment into creativity and innovation. DACS’ total distributions to artists represent almost twice as much as the investment made by Arts Council England to individuals for visual arts related activities over a similar period.
Please see  or for more information.
About the Artist’s Resale Right
The Artist’s Resale Right was introduced in February 2006 and entitles artists to a royalty each time their work changes hands through an auction house or gallery. The Right successfully balances the interests of artists with the interests of the art trade and recognises the on-going stake an artist has in the economic value of their work.
The online petition supporting the final implementation of the Artist’s Resale Right has almost 2,000 signatures from artists and those with an interest in the art trade. For more information, visit
For further information please contact Tania Spriggens, Director of Communications at DACS on [email protected] or 020 7553 9052.
 Heloise Wood 
Public Affairs Campaign Advisor [email protected]
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