Ben Turnbull, Hero III, 2011; courtesy of the artist and Eleven Fine Art, London
This exhibition takes a retrospective look at Ben Turnbull’s striking visual arts practice from the last decade, alongside newly commissioned artwork and publication with an essay by Richard Dyer.
America acts as muse for Turnbull, its politics, culture, history and media are the basis for work that adopts childrens’ playthings, cult items and memoribillia for its distinctive aesthetic. Objects are manipulated, subverted and combined with satire to comment on war, propaganda, violence, the depths of patriotism and the paranoid state of society.
Turnbull's highly crafted work often manifests with a glossy toy factory feel, but don't be fooled by the humour and Pop appearance, Turnbull's art is political and has something to say. From his unflinching criticism of political policy and the resulting influence on American society to his celebratory Heroes series which commemorates the selfless acts of the American emergency services when faced with the atrocities of 9/11, you are never far from Turnbull's social commentary