Folk Archive

« We decided to avoid is often called "outsider art". our artists are mostly quite clear on how their work will be read, and we have simply transposed the works from one form of public display to the more traditional presentation of art in a gallery. We mostly applied the same wide-ranging criteria for deciding as we would normally bring to viewing any art. We looked for works which have attributes including; humour, modernity, insight, a unique voice or perspective, motifs we recognise and ones we don't, attempts to takle ambitious subjects, refreshing directness or effectiveness, endeavours beyond normal expectation, pathos or just something that they have been common to all contributions is that they have been authored by individuals who would perhaps nor primarily consider themselves artists.
Whith Folk Archive we are treading a path between being artists and being anthropologists. as artists we engage in an optimistic journey of personal discovery (albeit often very close to home). As anthropologists, we hope are describing something overlooked and worthy of attention as thoroughly as possible. For those interested in an anthropological approach, we must apologise for the rather too knowing misuse of the phrase "archive" and an artistic casualness with details. For all involved in the folk or vernacular cultural scenes we must similarly apologise for the cheap "folk" shot and a fly-by-night plundering of whole worlds. »

(Jeremy Deller & Alan Kane, Folk Archive. Contemporary Popular Art from the UK, Londres, Book Works, 2008 : préface.)