There isn’t a bow-peep frock in sight when I meet Grayson Perry at the Victoria Miro Gallery. Instead he’s dressed in the standard gear of the successful artist: ubiquitous white T-shirt, jeans and some rather snazzy tortoise shell glasses. Known to many as that bloke in a dress who won the Turner prize for his outré pots with their explicit scenes of sadomasochism, bondage and transvestism, in his day-to-day male persona without the glitter eye shadow and lipstick, he has a strong, nearly[ good looking face. It is only the longish hair that gives any clue to his alternative life as Clare, when he then styles it into a blond bob.
After his successful show at the British Museum, The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman, for which he raided the museum’s archives extracting rare treasures that he then juxtaposed with his own artwork to create not only a personal take on world history, but what he calls “a journey through my mind”, he has recently acquired a wider audience, beyond the confines of the art world, with his witty, insightful series for Channel 4: All in the Best Possible Taste. In this he examined the British class system, along with the subtle complexities of signs and signifiers that define them. These included a torch song singer in a working men’s club, aspirational yummy mummy cup cakes and stolid middle class William Morris wall paper. A night out in drag, drenched in spray tan, with the girls of Sunderland was followed by a social bash among the ‘nobs’.
Issue 12 Autumn 2012 Elephant Magazine
Content and Texts © Sue Hubbard 2012
Images © Perry Grayson 2012