Post Troubles Derry cheer on Grayson Perry. There is another world

 

grayson perry2As an occasional live attender  in the past, for me this was a first for the BBC’s Reith Lectures, normally an austere and rather forbidding event.  Whoops, cheers and whistles greeted the cross dressing artist and potter Grayson Perry in Londonderry Guildhall for the third in this year’s series, Nice Rebellion Welcome in!  (text pending on website.) No, not that sort of rebellion but how claims that art is rebellious and original are easily subverted by the lure of commerce and the fact that so much is rubbish. Bliss it was that there was hardly a local reference before the questions -= and still the whoops kept coming from what the chair Sue Lawley remarked was “a highly appreciative audience”.

The questions  when they came were over subscribed by  too many establishment members in the nervous and now outmoded Reith Lectures manner, no harm to them – Deirdre Heenan of Magee UU, Shona MCarthy of the UK City of Culture company, Bob Collins of the NI Arts Council, ex DG of RTE and a southerner. To Ms McCarthy, worried about the “gentrification” effect of the City of Culture year  (in Derry?)  Grayson said : “ Give artists a place where they can live and work cheaply”.  (Roars of applause). To another worried about commissioning, he laid into the “brochure- speak pouring out of civic leaders.. let it happen, just let it happen.” As a good atheist, what did he want to take with him in his coffin?  “ My teddy bear.. They can put all my art in a skip for all I care. But those people who bought it might be worried.” I’m  too slow at getting over the culture shock, Turner Prize and all. But where it matters, young Derry take it all in their stride, thank God.

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  • babyface finlayson

    Perry/LondonPerry as he likes to be known.

  • Mick Fealty

    Gotta be the highlight so far…

  • aquifer

    “worried about the “gentrification” effect of the City of Culture year”

    When every city wants the smart and creative classes and the jobs they bring gentrification could be a nice problem to have.

  • Charles_Gould

    Is there evidence of the gentrification of Londonderry – it could be a very good thing if it was to engender a greater degree of integration in housing between the various religious communities.

  • Charles_Gould

    In London you find that places like Shoreditch and Dalston move up when the artistic and creative groups of society move in, you also get better night life on the streets and a lively, un-threatening and relaxed feeling on the streets in the evening.

  • Coll Ciotach

    yes luvvie – it is all grand and good

  • Barnshee

    “Is there evidence of the gentrification of Londonderry – it could be a very good thing if it was to engender a greater degree of integration in housing between the various religious communities.”

    What planet have you been living on ? The city is wholly divided -the prods have been eliminated from the west bank where the micks squander (London) taxpayers money on excessive inappropriate jobs and salaries -while whinging about how terrible everything is.

  • Charles_Gould

    Barnshee isn’t there any gentrification on the West Bank then,with protestant yuppies moving into city-centre apartments, and artists writers and other creative types and so on moving in to the terraced housing?

  • Barnshee

    ” any gentrification on the West Bank then,with protestant yuppies moving into city-centre apartments, and artists writers and other creative types and so on moving in to the terraced housing?”

    NO (You can`t polish a turd)

  • Charles_Gould

    It’s not a turd though – there is a great history there. Houses are cheap and the atmosphere physically attractive in the historic city. A recipe for artists and bohemians and trendy types to set up. This has happened in places like Shoreditch and Dalston etc etc.

  • Mick Fealty[7.42] And there’s a week from next Monday of exposure on the soap Hollyoaks which won’t do any harm with tourism angle for the city.