Suffice to say, I've been really looking forward to seeing the most recent exhibition of Grayson Perry's work in Bristol - The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever! - at the Arnolfini. If I were still writing my arts column for the local paper, I'd have been down there to see it a lot earlier in its run, but I'm not and I'm glad, too, since the note to one of the exhibits - Puff Piece - says that GP can't bear to read any of the reviews of his shows these days, as the good ones affect him just as much as the negative ones. (Not that he would have come across said local paper, of course, but even so.)
Anyway, I'm just going to post photos to remind me of my favourite bits, and of the fun I had watching other visitors to the exhibition react to the pieces on display.
Battle of Britain
Battle of Britain (detail)
the Remain pot
the Leave pot
(The outside trying to break in. This is through the gallery window, not an exhibit.)
Alan Measles and Claire Visit the Rust Belt
Jeremy Corbyn holding Claire's hand while Theresa May and Boris Johnson look on
Trump kissing Alan's hand as Melania Trump and Nigel Farage look on
The Digmoor Tapestry
Puff Piece (detail)
'rich people deserve equal rights too!' ... 'war and poverty are bad, I learnt that at university' ... 'super expensive knick-knacks against facism' ... 'all my ideas are recycled' ... 'liberal values sold here' ... 'this art makes me a better person' ... 'I've read all the academic research about empathy' ... 'remind me what it it we're protesting about' ... 'let them eat conceptual art' ... 'I'm off to buy a very serious piece of political art' ... 'poor places are so much more authentic'
Animal Spirit and Object in Foreground
Death of a Working Hero (detail)
Shadow Boxing (detail)
What I like best about GP's work is its layered quality, which is most evident in the pottery and tapestries. There is always so much more going on beneath the surface, and the longer you look, the deeper you see. It's something I always try to do in my poems, and I left the exhibition more determined than ever to achieve that.
Grump of the Day was that the perspex boxes protecting the pottery and sculptures, whilst necessary, were horribly smeary and in need of a good clean.
Final Joy of the Day was the discovery that having waited years for one to come along, a second Grayson Perry exhibition, featuring six tapestries inspired by Hogarth's The Rake's Progress, will open at Bristol City Museum on 31st March 2018.