Grayson Perry (British, b.1960) At Woodbury Park
30 x 20.5 cm (11.75 x : 8.25 in)
Watercolour, Ink and Collage. Signed - Verso. Work Date: 2011
An original and unique work, preparatory for the Tunbridge Wells Tapestries, by this extraordinary English artist, famous for his art and for his cross-dressing. Grayson Perry was awarded the Turner prize in 2003 for his brilliant but often shocking ceramic works. As well as ceramics, Grayson Perry is well renowned for his work in printmaking, drawing and embroidery
Provenance Woodbury Park
Literature: Jacky Klein 'Grayson Perry' A Biography and Exhibition History, London 2010; Grayson Perry 'The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman', The British Museum, 2011
In September 2011 Grayson Perry was researching material for a Channel 4 television series about taste in Britain; the result intending to be an exciting new artwork, a series of tapestries by Grayson exploring British taste. One of the area in focus was Tunbridge Wells which has a reputation as a quintessentially middle class town. Grayson also visited Woodbury Park, the wonderful Arcadian cemetery there, and helped the Friends with their fund-raising efforts whilst gathering materials for his forthcoming tapestry.
The small images clustering among the main character are of other matters and topics relating to modern life which Grayson Perry beautifully and sensitively portrays in the present work, in all their vulnerability and impracticality.
Grayson Perry was born in 1960 and grew up in Essex - in Bicken Acre, Great Bardfield and Chelmsford. He won the Turner Prize in 2003 and is also famous for being a transvestite.
He is known primarily for his ceramic vases but he works in several media. Perry's vases have classical forms and are decorated in bright colours, depicting subjects at odds with their attractive appearance, often with disturbing images and sado-masochism. There is a strong autobiographical element in his work, in which images of Perry as "Claire", his female alter-ego, often appear. He was awarded the Turner Prize in 2003 for his ceramics, receiving the prize dressed as Claire. He lives in London and Sussex with his wife, the author and psychotherapist, Philippa Perry and their daughter.
Turning his hand to textiles, Grayson Perry unveiled the extraordinary Walthamstow Tapestry in 2009. A vast Jacquard woven tapestry, decorated with hundreds of brand names, measuring fifteen meters by three meters, The Walthamstow tapestry was inspired by Grayson Perry's enthusiasm for the elaborate imagery of early 20th-century Sumatran batik fabrics. The Tapestry, can be read from left to right. It starts with a graphically bloody scene of childbirth and then continues with depictions of the seven ages of man, through childhood, adulthood and eventually to death.
He has recently started making documentaries. In 2011 he curated the exhibition 'The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman' at The British Museum. He is considered a major influence in contemporary British Art.