Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Essential Listening: Democracy Has Bad Taste

Democracy Has Bad Taste is the first of this year's Reith Lectures by Grayson Perry.  

It is essential listening for all artists and those involved in viewing art, curating art, selling art and collecting art.

It's now available to listen to on the BBC Radio Player
I want to talk about the issue of quality because I think this is one of the most burning issues around art – how do we tell if something is good?
Grayson Perry
I love Grayson Perry.  He's my kind of contemporary artist - accessible and subversive at one and the same time!  That's subversive as in saying what everybody's thinking - even if they daren't say it out loud in case it harms their careers. One could describe him as an intellectual, articulate and highly visible version of Banksy.
To deliver an original thesis which develops across four lectures, have them subjected to cross-questioning from audiences of hundreds and broadcast to millions beyond that, takes intellectual rigour, a deal of wisdom and (always a bonus) a dollop of wit. Grayson has these qualities in spades.Sue Lawley
I like the fact that:
  • he creates art in what are commonly seen as unfashionable art media - ceramics and tapestries
  • he exists and his art is popular despite and not because of the art establishment
  • he became a member of the Royal Academy of Arts and won the Turner Prize  despite being in his own words nothing more than a "transvest*ite potter from Essex"
  • he still resorts to a pencil and paper and drawing in order to get an idea worked out
  • he unsettles all the chaps with his cross-dressing.  I find that females almost universally love him!
  • and finally.....he's one of the most articulate people talking today about art. He makes art accessible for very many people.
For me he slices through the cr*p and astutely finds new ways of making his point - in ways which nobody else seems to be able to replicate - which can only be a good thing!
I'm quite surprised to be here tonight, because two days ago I had a phone call asking if I would be a judge for the Not the Turner Prize. And two years ago I was asked by the Stuckists to dress as a clown and come and be on the steps outside, so I am thrilled and slightly surprised to be here.
Grayson Perry - Winner of the Turner Prize (2003)

Reith Lectures & Grayson Perry - links to related websites

BBC sites

Reviews

Apologies for the asterisks - but this post kept running into problems and it occurred to me it might be running into the buffers of some Google Code for Acceptable Language!

7 comments:

katy gilmore said...

Oh Thank You Katherine - you are amazing. This looks terrific, and being in your Yank audience, I might easily have missed! Thank you!

shevaun said...

It's also available in iTunes as a podcast if people can't access BBC ��

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Thanks Shevaun - very helpful

J R Shepherd said...

Oh I listened to this too coincidentally. Thought he was brilliant - serious, but with humour. Tricky to do but he manages it superbly. Who would have thought that curators had so much power huh?! One thing I will say and that is I wouldn't mind visiting some of these vaults underneath the top banks - they must have so many amazing things hidden away. I know that Deutschbank has a brilliant art collection which they proudly exhibit, but I don't know much about other banks... Would make a good theme for an 'open day'.

Katherine Tyrrell said...

What an excellent idea! Now I wonder who could take that forward?

I have visited ING and seen their art collection - which is very good - see my 2011 blog post The ING Art Collection

Astrid Volquardsen said...

Thanks so much for posting this.
I loved his ideal formula for art in the 21st century:
“Get a half decent, non-offensive kind of idea, times it by the number of studio assistants, divide it with an ambitious art dealer and that equals the number of oligarchs and hedge fund managers in the world.”

Astrid Volquardsen said...

Thanks so much for posting this.
I loved his ideal formula for art in the 21st century:
“Get a half decent, non-offensive kind of idea, times it by the number of studio assistants, divide it with an ambitious art dealer and that equals the number of oligarchs and hedge fund managers in the world.”

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