Richard Deacon is a sculptor born in Bangor in Wales in 1949. He has emerged as one of Britain’s most celebrated sculptors, best known for creating abstract works that combine biomorphic, open forms and virtuoso engineering. He works mainly in steel, wood, plastic, leather and cloth and has used bent steamed wood for his more recent works.
He was educated at Plymouth College and then studied at the Somerset College of Art in Taunton, St Martin’s School of Art in London, the Royal College of Art and Chelsea College of Art.

In 1980 he began making a series of sheet metal and laminated wood sculptures in simple organic shapes, their surfaces congruent with their structure. Deacon considered himself a fabricator rather than a constructor and used unformed basic material to make sculptures that explored, by the use of metaphor, ideas that defined human experience through language and the senses. Although the forms devised by Deacon were fundamentally abstract in appearance, this metaphorical reference to the body and its methods of gathering information was alluded to in idiomatic titles such as The Eye Has It (1984; London, ACGB; seeEngland, fig. 34). As Deacon widened both his vocabulary and his range of materials, incorporating, for instance, vinyl and plywood into Boys and Girls (1982; London, British Council), so he increased the depth and complexity of metaphor into a highly flexible personal idiom.

Richard Deacon won the Turner Prize in 1987 and the Robert Jakobsen Prize, Museum Wurth, Kunzelsau, Germany in 1995. In 1997 he was awarded Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres, France, and in 1998 was elected a Royal Academician. Deacon was made CBE in 1999. He lives and works in London. Recent solo exhibitions include a major retrospective at Tate Britain (2014), as well as exhibitions in New York, Copenhagen, and Singapore, among others.

Richard Deacon
Richard Deacon
Bangor, 1949

Past Exhibitions

Lisson Presents…

Lisson Gallery, 67 Lisson Street
22/09/2017 — 11/11/2017

Out of the Matrix

Kunsthalle Palazzo
13/05/2017 — 25/06/2017

Richard Deacon: Thirty Pieces

Thaddeus Ropac Pantin
10/03/2017 — 15/04/2017

Richard Deacon: Flat Earth

Lisson Gallery, Milan
17/03/2016 — 29/04/2016

Artists in Their Time

Istanbul Museum
27/07/2015 — 04/01/2016

Solo Shows

‘Flat Earth’, Lisson Gallery, Milan, Italy
‘Drawings 1968 – 2016’, Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany
‘On The Other Side’, Langen Foundation, Neuss

‘On The Other Side’, Heydar Aliyev Centre, Baku, Azerbaijan
‘This is where ideas come from’, Wolfson College, Cambridge, UK
‘On The Other Side’, Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Winterthur, Switzerland

Tate Britain, London, UK
‘Form and Colour’, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Salzburg, Austria
Jablonka Galerie, Cologne, Germany

‘Let’s Call It Something Else’, Galerie Thomas Schulte, Berlin, Germany
‘Beware of the Dog,’ LA Louver, Venice, CA, USA

‘Associations’, Lisson Gallery, London, UK
‘Beware of the Dog’, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, Singapore
Galleri Susan Ottesen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Malaga, Malaga, Spain

LA Louver, Venice, CA, USA
‘The Missing Part’, Sprengel Museum, Hanover, Germany
‘Dead leg’, University of New Mexico Art Museum, Albuquerque, NM, USA

‘The Missing Part’, Musée d’art Moderne et Contemporain, Strasbourg, France ‘The Inside’, New Art Centre, Roche Court, Salisbury, UK ‘Twist and Shout’, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris, France ‘How Much Does Your Mind Weigh?’, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Salzburg, Austria

Group Shows

‘3 hommes dans un bateau – Richard Deacon / Sui Jianguo / Henk Visch – Etre sculpteur aujourd’hui’, Fondation Maeght, Saint-Paul de Vence, France ‘Qwaypurlake’, Hauser & Wirth Somerset, Somerset, UK
‘Sculpture in Focus from The Würth Collection’, Museum Würth, Künzelsau, Germany
‘Show & Tell: Prints from the Krefeld Collection’, Museen Haus Lange and Haus Esters, Krefeld, Germany
‘From Hockney to Holbein, The Würth Collection in Berlin, Museum Würth and Berliner Festspiele/Martin Gropius-Bau, Berlin, Germany
‘Making It: Sculpture in Britain 1977–1986’, Longside Gallery, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield, UK: Mead Art Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre, University of Warwick, Warwick, UK; City Art Centre, Edinburgh, UK

‘Abstract Drawing’, The Drawing Room, London, UK
‘The Language of Human Consciousness’, Athr Gallery, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia ‘Body & Void: Echoes of Moore in Contemporary Art’, Henry Moore Foundation, Perry Green, Hertfordshire, UK

‘La Qualité de l’Ombre: 3 x 3 Künstler Europas’, Ludwig Museum, Koblenz, Germany
‘Here We Go: A Changing Group Show’, Karsten Schubert, London, UK

‘News from Nowhere’, Firstsite, Colchester, UK
‘Encounter: The Royal Academy in Asia’, Institute of Contemporary Arts, Singapore
‘In Situ, Patrimoine et Art Contemporain’, Abbaye de Gellone, Saint-Guilhem-leDésert, France

‘Sculpture by Richard Deacon, Joel Shapiro and Peter Shelton, Painting by Imi Knoebel, Robert Mangold and Jason Martin’, LA Louver, Venice, CA, USA
‘From Floor to Sky’, Ambika P3, London, UK
‘Calder to Warhol: Introducing the Fisher Collection’, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA, USA
‘Drawing to Form: Art from the Weltkunst Collection’, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, Ireland
‘Le Meilleur des Mondes’, Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg ‘3 x 3’, LA Louver, Venice, CA, USA
‘The Gathering’, Longside Gallery, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield, UK
‘The Future Demands Your Participation: Contemporary Art From the British Council Collection’, Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai, China
‘En mai, fais ce qu’il to plait!’, Musée Bourdelle, Paris, France
‘Rijksakadmie Artists’ Endowment Fund’, Sotheby’s, Amsterdam, Netherlands ‘Ontmoeting: Een keuze uit de collectie van het M HKA in Rabat’, Galerie Bab Rouah/Musée des Oudayas, Rabat, Morocco
‘Super Farmers’ Market’, Handel Street Projects, London, UK
‘Sensoralites Excentriques’, Musée Departemental d’Art Contemporain, Rocheouart, France
‘Klasse Deacon’, Raum für Vollendete Tatsachen, Dusseldorf, Germany

Contacts & Details

City of birth: Bangor Country of birth: UK Date of birth: 1949 Lives in: London, UK