Golden Drawing and the Coviad
Golden Drawing and the Coviad image
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This event ended on Monday 12th of July 2021

Free virtual online


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Presented at, the first full scale virtual museum

With the initial and successful rollout of the vaccines and an end to lockdowns in sight we can now start to engage with art emerging from, and reflecting, the scale and diversity of impact resulting from the pandemic. presents online David Breuer-Weil’s ‘Coviad’ in anticipation of a gradual but definite renewal of freedom without fear. Breuer-Weil’s response is articulated on via a virtual exhibition launching on 12th April.

The Coviad is a contemporary version of the Bayeux Tapestry for the age of Covid, and of identical size - some 350,000 square centimetres. The Coviad was executed prior to the current debate about the proposed restoration of the Bayeux Tapestry in the UK, making it uncannily relevant.

This epic work, executed in pencil and gold leaf, and one of the largest drawings in history, tells of the experiences of the last year in breath-taking detail. From the mysterious origins of the pandemic, to its global spread, the artist transforms many symbols that appear in the tapestry into contemporary icons. The Coviad, the title being a pun on the epic poem, The Iliad, charts the spread of the pandemic carried by planes, boats and people, the lockdowns, divisions into support bubbles, Thursday night clapping in support of the NHS, the masked population, daily walks, separation from loved ones and tragic fatalities. It also portrays significant concurrent events, the murder of George Floyd, the protests and toppling of statues and general physical and mental health instability.

The artist, who contracted Covid-19 during Spring 2020, also engages with biblical comparisons and uses imagery for relevant effect. The Coviad ends on a positive note as the vaccines arrive like angels from heaven and the world returns to an unknown form of normality. The last of the 70 connected panels sees a telescope looking at Perseverance landing on Mars, a symbol of hope for the future. The Coviad is exhibited here literally just weeks after its completion (during the third lockdown) and stands as a testament to the threat to humanity in our time.

The Coviad is exhibited together with a selection of the 66 Golden Drawings the artist executed during the first lockdown.

The artist has commented: “I had just completed The Coviad when the Ben Uri approached me about exhibiting the Golden Drawings. The Ben Uri is one of the first museums to have recognised the future for virtual exhibitions, long before Covid, and has been prescient in its anticipation of the future of museum shows. Its innovation has allowed the public to see a relevant artwork within weeks of its completion, and that is a major development in closing the gap between the creation of urgent art and the viewing public.”

David Breuer-Weil, Golden Drawings and The Coviad, at, the first full scale virtual museum and research centre (Ben Uri Gallery and Museum) Launches on 12th April 2021 and will be a permanent virtual exhibition at the museum. David narrates a film of his works too, supporting the virtual exhibition here, the exhibition and his supporting book and biography launches on 12th April and 19th April, and will remain online in separate presentations within the extensive and growing library of engagements on which is open 24/7. All films, exhibitions, books and biographies are free to engage and enjoy.


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