Crowds Flock To London For Grayson Perry Exhibit

As you enter London’s National Portrait Gallery, you can see that the opening of the Grayson Perry: Who Are You? exhibition has become quite popular with visitors. The show includes 14 pieces of his work that were made to complement his new TV series on Channel 4, which has the same name as the exhibit. It is also in connection with his new book, “Playing to the Gallery: Helping Contemporary Art in its Struggle to be Understood.”

Perry, who was born in 1950, won the Turner Prize for contemporary art in 2003 and is also the first artist to be asked to present at the extremely respected Reith lectures. Even though Perry’s current display may be modest, standing at only 14 pieces, the exhibit has encouraged visitors to study each of the portraits. In the past, Perry’s works have been familiar and popular; however, during the past few years, the artist has ventured into separate domains, even tampering with tapestries and sculptures.

For his London show, Perry focused on the individuals, families or groups which showcase the nature of identity. For instance, one piece included the discredited politician, Chris Huhne, whose face is on a vase that is broken and then repaired using gold (Kintsugi contemporary Japanese method). Instead of geometrical patterns, his face is shown repeatedly side by side with speed cameras and phalluses.

Another piece is the Comfort Blanket, which is a big tapestry featuring the Queen as a centerpiece. Weaved into it are some of the national treasures of the country like curry, or fish and chips, as well as the Magna Carta document. Suffragists and an apparently arbitrary list of famed people, such as David Bowie, Edward Elgar and Jamie Oliver, are all arranged in colorful patterns.

Perry exhibition’s has been very well received, receiving a record amount of visitors, with around 250,000 people viewing it as of this week. The reason for this, according to some, is that Perry is considered an excellent communicator and observer who has great empathy for others; he is able to see what is inside of people and portray that in his works.