Join the great Grayson’s Art Club Exhibition..!

Friday: Grayson’s Art Club Exhibition; (Channel 4, 8pm)

Grayson and Philippa
Grayson and Philippa

Cast your mind back to May, a time when our movement was restricted, we were spending more time at home and we couldn’t go out and meet our friends and family.

So, much like the rest of this coronavirus-decimated year then…

It was also the time when Grayson Perry sealed his position as a bona fide national treasure thanks to a deceptively simple but compelling series in which he encouraged the public to spend their newfound spare time getting creative.

Each week, he opened up his studio, allowing viewers to witness his own process; his wife, psychotherapist Philippa, also joined in, while their beloved cat Kevin even made a guest appearance.

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Perry invited the public to participate by sending in their own works on a variety of themes, including Portraits, The View from My Window, Fantasy and Animals.

Those who impressed him the most were promised the chance to take part in an exhibition curated by Perry that would take place once the lockdown was over.

We’re still waiting for it to appear, but as we’re about to see in this programme, it’s ready to be seen at Manchester Art Gallery – once such places are allowed to open again.

“I could not be happier with Manchester Art Gallery, the venue for the Art Club exhibition,” says Perry.

“All the artists who appeared on our TV series put in a lot of skill, thought and feeling into their works and I am so proud that they will get the opportunity to see their art hanging in this grand, nearly 200-year-old institution.

“From its inception Art Club was about the benefits of making art that are open to all.

In the true spirit of the series we will be exhibiting the works grouped not by hierarchy of fame or value but in themes.

Each artwork will hang amongst others that talk of the shared experiences we have lived through during this extraordinary time of the Covid crisis.

“This show is a crystallisation of the feelings and obsessions of artists from all over the country whether it is their first painting since primary school or they are world famous. This will be a show about the joy and solace of making art. It will also be a still moment to reflect on a situation that has affected everyone on the planet.”

During the programme, Perry will reunite – albeit in a socially distant fashion – with some of the well-known artists who are taking part, as well as celebrity entrants.

Appearing alongside the likes of Jeremy Deller, Maggi Hambling, Antony Gormley, Jim Moir (aka Vic Reeves), Liza Tarbuck and Noel Fielding are various members of the public.

Among those to look out for are Emma Major, who is registered blind, and Alex Robinson, a vulnerable young man struggling with the change to his routine, who appeared alongside his mum Rachel to speak about his amazing clay creatures – leaving many viewers moved to tears.

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