I go to the Royal academy exhibition every year so I sort of know what to expect, but this year was really different and very refreshing.
This year, the 250th Summer Exhibition was curated by Grayson Perry, one of my favourite artists. He is very colourful, flamboyant and quirky and often wears the most spectacular outfits. The exhibition really reflected Grayson’s personality, it was certainly colourful, one room was painted bright yellow and another bright blue, with so many artworks packed in it gave the impression of a patchwork quilt of art.
It was also very quirky, there has always been an air of anti-establishment and even anti-art to the summer exhibition but this year humour and political statements were the overriding theme to the show. It was also bigger than ever with new areas opened up including a room upstairs with skylights to show the works on paper in the best natural light, and another small room titled ‘the room of fun’ with the most bizarre pieces in the show including several portraits of Grayson Perry and a shopping trolley full of an assortment of objects and homemade signs with the title ‘everything must go’.
My favourite piece in the whole show was by Grayson Perry himself. A large colourful woodcut print called ‘Selfie with political causes’. I also Loved the huge fabric piece by Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos and enjoyed seeing the enormous photographic drawing by David Hockney.
Grayson Perry – Selfie with political causes
David Hockney – Inside it opens up as well
Overall I thought it was a very vibrant, uplifting experience. In the past I have been a bit sniffy about the lack of skill and craftsmanship but now I finally get it, It is art exhibition completely liberated from convention and conformity, it’s a celebration.
ROYAL VALKYRIE – Joana Vasconcelos
Article and photos by Ellie Contreras