Ben Moore (curator)
|Born||25 May 1978|
|Residence||Richmond, London, England|
|Occupation||Founder & curator, |
Art Below & Art Wars
Ben Moore (born 25 May 1978) is a British art curator, entrepreneur and artist. He is the founder and curator of Art Below, a contemporary art organisation that places art in public spaces and has had shows in England, Germany, Japan and the United States. He is also the founder and curator of Art Wars, an exhibition of designs based on the Imperial Stormtrooper helmets from Star Wars.
Early life and education
Moore founded Art Below in 2006 to present contemporary art on space traditionally used for advertising in London Underground stations, debuting as an exhibition of 20 artists across 20 stations, staged by Moore and his younger brother, Simon Moore. The collective has since grown into an annual display showcasing established and emerging artists, and has collaborated with charities, universities, government and art organisations, with an aim to display progressive and provocative artwork. For a fee, it allows artists to display their artwork on billboard space in the Underground, in line with Moore's belief that people should have the right to display their work in public. Moore has curated and produced exhibits for Art Below in London, Berlin, Tokyo, Los Angeles and New Orleans. Art Below exhibits have included works by Banksy, Alison Jackson, Charles Bronson, Ben Eine, Antony Micallef, Mat Collishaw, Julie Umerle, Sarah Maple and Johan Andersson. 
In 2010, Art Below joined with Peace Strike to create a series of plinth art installations promoting peace in Parliament Square by the Palace of Westminster in London. The first installation, in February 2011, was by special effects artist Tristan "Schoony" Schoonraad, who created a 3D installation depicting child soldiers. In addition to curating the installation, Moore also created an oil painting for it.
Art Below's 2014 exhibition Stations of the Cross featured depictions of the Passion of Christ by 14 artists. The exhibition opened at London's St Marylebone Parish Church on March 6, 2014, and ran for 40 days, coinciding with Lent. To coincide with the exhibition, Art Below showcased selected works on billboard space throughout the London Underground at stations that have a symbolic link with the theme. The exhibition returned in 2015 with works by 20 artists, including a life-sized sculpture of a crucified Pete Doherty, called For Pete's Sake. A collaboration between Doherty, Nick Reynolds and Schoony, it was created in 2008 and publicly displayed for the first time at Stations of the Cross at St Marylebone Parish Church in 2015, curated by Moore.
In 2016, Moore curated Queen Themed, an exhibition of contemporary portraits of Queen Elizabeth II on the occasion of her 90th birthday. Opening at The Tabernacle in London, some of the works were also displayed at London Underground tube stations. It included work by Gavin Turk, Chris Levine, Mr. Brainwash and Goldie.
In 2017, as part of Art Below's subway series, Anish Kapoor's reworking of Joseph Beuys' 1974 performance art piece I Like America and America Likes Me was unveiled at Union Station in Los Angeles, California. Kapoor titled his self-portrait I Like America and America Doesn't Like Me as a protest against the immigration policies of US President Donald Trump's administration.
In 2013, Moore teamed up with the charity Missing People to produce Art Wars, an exhibition featuring designs based on the Imperial Stormtrooper helmets and body armour from the Star Wars films. Fourteen artists created replicas and re-imaginings of the helmets, including Damien Hirst, D*Face and Yinka Shonibare. Moore contributed to the exhibit with a melted down and crushed acrylic-capped Stormtrooper helmet. Andrew Ainsworth, who designed the original Stormtrooper suit, donated a helmet cast from the original 1976 molds for the artists to use. The exhibit premiered at the Saatchi Gallery in London on October 9, 2013, and posters of the helmets were then displayed by Art Below on billboards at the Regent's Park tube station. A mobile app allowed users to view the designs in 3D.
In December 2016, Moore curated Art Wars Rogue One Exhibition in London, featuring helmets by Anish Kapoor, D*Face and six other artists.
In 2010, Moore was commissioned by the Royal Institute of British Architects to create a stop motion film of the "Three Classicists" exhibition, a large architectural drawing by Ben Peantreath, Francis Terry and George Saumarez Smith. That same year, Moore was commissioned to make the documentary A Day in the Life of Dan for the Royal British Legion. The 28-minute film premiered at the East End Film Festival on Remembrance Day.
In 2013, Moore curated Thatcheristic, an exhibit featuring 10 artists' depictions of former UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in alternatives to how she has typically been portrayed (including as Queen Victoria and as the Virgin Mary). The exhibit opened at Gallery Different in London on April 17, 2013, the day of Thatcher's funeral. Participating artists included Moore, Harry Pye, Peter Kennard and Nasser Azam.
Moore founded the Missing Tom Fund, an organization raising money in search of his older brother Tom, who suffers from mental health issues and went missing in 2003. Many of the art exhibits he curates partially benefit the Missing Tom Fund.
- Nick Curtis, "Ben Moore is going underground with art," London Evening Standard, 25 May 2010.
- “The ArtLyst Power 100: 2013 Alternative Art Power List Unveiled,” artlyst.com, 23 October 2013.
- Daisy Wyatt, “Art Wars: Damien Hirst and Yinka Shonibare give Stormtrooper helmets a makeover,” The Independent, 8 October 2013.
- Konahrtist, “Art Below by Ben Moore,” Empty Kingdom, 24 January 2011.
- Pippa Irvine, “Interview with Art Below’s Ben Moore,” Archived 21 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine. fadwebsite.com, 26 April 2010.
- “Art Below to Unveil London Peace Plinth in Los Angeles,” Archived 21 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine. fadwebsite.com, 5 April 2012.
- Angus Montgomery, “The Peace Project,” Design Week, 28 September 2012.
- ArtLyst. 'Art of Angel Launches For London Art Fair Week'.09-01-2012. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
- BBC News. 'Charles Bronson artwork on London Underground'. 28-04-2010. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
- "'Boy soldiers' artwork shown outside Parliament," BBC News, 19 February 2011.
- Siobhan Morrin, “Peace Of Art,” Don't Panic, 16 January 2011.
- "Stations Of The Cross Explored In New Art Below Exhibition," Artlyst, 23 February 2014.
- Gemma Mullin, "For Pete's sake, it's a church! Crucified sculpture of drug addict singer Pete Doherty installed in London chapel in the name of ART," Daily Mail, February 19, 2015.
- "Lifesize Pete Doherty crucifixion sculpture to be unveiled in church," The Guardian, February 18, 2015.
- Nick Clark, "Pete Doherty crucified – for art," The Independent, February 19, 2015.
- "Artbelow Presents Contemporary Alternative Portraits Of The Queen At 90," Artlyst, May 28, 2016.
- "Anish Kapoor Unveils Pro Immigration Poster in LA's Union Station," Artlyst, February 23, 2017.
- Laurien Ash, "Damien Hirst and David Bailey don their Stormtrooper helmets for 'Art Wars'," The Daily Telegraph, October 2, 2013.
- Crushing Force, artnet.com. Retrieved April 28, 2017.
- Leigh Silver, “Artists Join the Dark Side and Create Stormtrooper Helmets for ‘Art Wars’,” Complex, 2 October 2013.
- "ARTWARS – Rogue One Edition," Rize, December 15, 2016.
- The Three Classicists, artbelow.org.uk. Retrieved 29 January 2014.
- “Three Classicists,” The Bardwell Press. Retrieved 29 January 2014.
- “Gritty Drama at the East End Film Festival,” Over Informed, 27 April 2010.
- Matthew Tucker, “The Art of Politics: ‘Thatcheristic’ Exhibition Opens On Day Of Funeral,” Huffington Post, 18 April 2013.
- “Thatcheristic: new exhibition showing a different side to the Iron Lady,” London Evening Standard, 12 April 2013.
- Simon Hattenstone, "Without you: what it's like to be the sibling of a missing person," The Guardian, April 11, 2015.
- "Artlyst Alternative Power 100 Launches 2015 Fifth Birthday Edition," Artlyst, November 2, 2015.