Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years

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Grayson Perry, Cocktail Party, 1989 Courtesy of the artist and Victoria Miro London/Venice
Jan 24, 2020Jan 3, 2021


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The first exhibition to survey Grayson Perry’s earliest forays into the art world re-introduces the explosive and creative works he made between 1982 and 1994. These ground-breaking ‘lost’ pots are reunited for the first time to focus on the formative years of one of Britain’s most recognisable artists.

The show at the Holburne Museum is also remarkable for the fact that many of the 70 items on display have been crowd-sourced from across the UK, following a hugely successful appeal to the public in 2018.

Today, Perry – and his instantly-recognisable alter-ego, Claire – enjoys a reputation bordering on National Treasure status by virtue of his distinctive tapestry, collage and ceramic works – that often explore themes of gender, identity and social class – and his remarkable work as a witty social commentator on television and in print.

The Holburne exhibition displays the earliest works – pots, plates and sculptures – that first made Perry’s name, and will shine a light on his experimentation and exploration of the potential of pottery to address radical issues and human stories. For art lovers, Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years represents a unique opportunity to enjoy the artist’s clever, playful and politically-engaged perspective on the world through a number of pieces, many of which have not been seen in public since they were first exhibited. Often challenging and explicit, these works reveal the early development of Perry’s distinctive voice that has established him as one of the most compelling commentators on contemporary society.

Grayson Perry notes “This show has been such a joy to put together, I am really looking forward to seeing these early works again many of which I have not seen since the eighties. It is as near as I will ever get to meeting myself as a young man, an angrier, priapic me with huge energy but a much smaller wardrobe.”

A Book published by Thames & Hudson to accompany the exhibition Grayson Perry The Pre-Therapy Years is Edited by Catrin Jones and Chris Stephens Essays by Grayson Perry, Andrew Wilson and Catrin Jones. Publication 24 January 2020, Price: £19.95 available from our shop

Ticket Booking:

Your entry ticket Includes Grayson Perry The Pre-Therapy Years.
This is valid all day for the date you book and are not timed (you can enter any time during our normal opening hours)

  • There are no timed entry tickets
  • You can book in advance here,  or you can also just purchase tickets on arrival at the Museum
  • Last Admissions to the Museum is 4.30pm

Once you have booked online you will receive a confirmation email. Please show this on your mobile or smart device on entry or print it off at home and show on entry.
We look forward to seeing you.

We would like to thank:

Victoria Miro
Great Western Wine


The Holburne Museum
Holburne Museum
Bath, BA2 4DB United Kingdom
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