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Trannies, Taste and Teddy Bears: Uncovering the World of Grayson Perry

Lecture on Monday 1st November 2021 at 1:45PM

Lecturer: Jacky Klein

The definitive lecture on Britain’s favourite artist, by the author and lecturer who knows him best. Jacky has written the authoritative monograph on Grayson’s work, a bestselling book now in its third edition and covering the artist’s life and work, his loves and artistic inspirations, from his earliest student projects of the 1980s to his very latest work.

She has been a close collaborator of Perry’s for more than a decade, interviewing him numerous times and enjoying exclusive access to his archive, and in this talk she reveals his techniques and sources, his favourite themes and subjects, and the diverse artworks he has produced across ceramics, tapestry, print-making, sculpture and architecture.

How did Perry, almost unknown until his mid-40s when he unexpectedly won the Turner Prize, come to be Britain’s favourite artist since David Hockney and Lucian Freud? And where might this peculiarly British National Treasure be going next?


Jacky Klein is an art historian, publisher, writer and broadcaster, specialising in modern and contemporary art. After studying at Oxford University and the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, she worked as a curator at a number of leading galleries: Tate, the Barbican, the Courtauld and the Hayward. In 2008, she moved sideways into the world of art publishing, first as Commissioning Editor at Thames & Hudson, then as Executive Editor at Tate Publishing and subsequently as Director of HENI Publishing, a small independent arts publisher.

She is the author herself of a bestselling book on British artist Grayson Perry (Thames & Hudson, 3rd edition 2020) and co-author of a number of other titles including Alfred Cohen: An American Artist in Europe (Ben Uri Gallery / Alfred Cohen Art Foundation, 2020), Body of Art (Phaidon, 2015) and What is Contemporary Art?, a children's guide to the Museum of Modern Art, New York, which has been translated into 11 languages.

Jacky has presented and contributed to a range of television programmes for the BBC, and is a regular contributor to BBC Radio 4's arts review programme, Front Row. She has appeared on Channel 5, the Travel Channel and Bloomberg TV, and has written and presented a number of online films and livestreams for Tate, Christie's, HENI Talks and the Art Fund. She regularly delivers digital talks including Zoom lectures, ‘Instagram Live’ events and Crowdcast broadcasts which have reached live audiences of many thousands of people across the world. An experienced lecturer in museums, galleries and at literary festivals, she has taught at a number of arts institutions including University College London, Christie’s Education, the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Royal Academy of Arts. A public and passionate advocate for the arts, she is a Trustee of the UK Association for Art History, and is currently Associate Lecturer at the Courtauld Institute on their Masters programme, 'Curating the Art Museum'.

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