Jeremy Deller
Putin’s Happy

Film / Commissioned work


Künstlerhaus, Halle für Kunst und Medien

Production specifics
Commissioned and produced by steirischer herbst ’19

In collaboration steirischer herbst ’19 and Künstlerhaus, Halle für Kunst & Medien

Jeremy Deller’s new single-channel film provides a unique view of the rise of right-wing populism and, possibly, fascism in the United Kingdom. It looks at the often-absurd xenophobia, isolationism, and misplaced patriotism fueling the vote to leave the European Union, sentiments ironically shared by many Continental Europeans on the right, including those in Austria. A vocal opponent of Brexit, Deller has intervened directly in the political process—as with his highly publicized “Fuck Brexit” T-shirt campaign of 2017—and also delved into the “magic” of British national myths and political history that have produced the present moment. In his new film, Deller focuses on the grotesque details and eccentric decor of British populism’s fantasy world, showing its tragicomic effects in reality as its protesters reappear day in and day out. Banners designed by Deller in reference to the film preface the installation, continuing another means with which the artist has lent his unique voice to political struggles over the years. 

Directed by Jeremy Deller
Kamera: Jack Cocker, Jeremy Deller, and Jared Schiller
Editor: John McAvoy
Graphics: Fraser Muggeridge Studio
Colorist: Paul Fallon
Dubbing Mixer: Matt Skilton
Thanks to Jack Cocker and Patrick Michallet