Today, March 29, Theresa May has “pulled the trigger”—as many news outlets have referred to it—on Article Fifty, the UK’s formal announcement on withdrawing from the European Union. Many within the British art community and beyond have expressed their concerns over how the departure will affect the international artworld, says Anny Shaw of the Art Newspaper.
Wolfgang Tillmans, Tracey Emin, and Damien Hirst are but a mere handful of artists residing in London who have been vocally opposed to Brexit. Anish Kapoor, speaking at his Lisson Gallery opening in London today, said, “It’s one of those things that goes against the flow of history. Frankly, nationalism diminishes [us]. We want more than that, we want a bigger, more open vision.” Kapoor has a team of thirty people who work in his studio—half of them are not British. He is very concerned about what will happen to the arts economy: “London is a great place for the art world, but most art buyers are not English. What will it mean for the whole . . . art world? Sadly, it really is a matter of small minds, small hearts.”
According to a recent poll taken by the UK’s Creative Industries Federation, 96 percent of its members do not support Brexit.