First of all, I am British and very proud of my country, but having lived through three years of aggressive, divisive and destructive debate I felt compelled, as an artist, to convey my despair at the situation in which we find ourselves and create a monument to one of the most unpatriotic events Britain has ever seen.
The Pride of Brexit is intended as a physical manifestation of the effects of Brexit, a collective moment of self harm that has been inflicted upon us through lies and propaganda, financed by a wealthy, unaccountable elite.
The three wretched lions frame Brexit an act of gross national flagellation. Situated on the shores of the English Channel, surrounded by the iconic white cliffs, they are washed up, exhausted, emaciated and dying. In London they stand as monuments to our delusions, disfigured by the toxic language of Brexit and its main protagonists.
Sold to the population as regaining control and sovereignty of the country, Brexit has divided us, threatened the Union of Britain, caused billions of pounds worth of economic damage, weakened our institutions, eroded our faith in politicians, and opened the door for exploitation by large corporations and unaccountable foreign interests. It has undermined the UK ‘s reputation as a welcoming, open and rational society and limited opportunities for our children. Instead of focusing our attention on the pressing issues of the day – the climate emergency, child poverty, the housing crisis, the importance of our NHS – we have had a national identity crisis forced upon us. The proud British lions will only regain their health when the Brexit folly is abandoned and we, as a nation, can turn our attention to the issues that really matter.