Grayson Perry is in utter despair in a first look at his Art Club exhibition special, as the arrival of a second lockdown hampers plans to welcome members of the public back to art galleries.
Earlier this year, artist Grayson and his wife, psychotherapist and author Philippa Perry, launched Grayson’s Art Club, a six-episode series that helped people across the nation escape into the world of art.
Grayson Perry shows some of the artworks on display at the exhibition (Channel 4)
Those watching the programme took part in an array of artistic challenges, from drawing a portrait of a person they’re isolating with to depicting the view from their windows.
Following the final episode, Grayson has created a one-off special titled Grayson’s Art Club: The Exhibition, which will see the 60-year-old visit Manchester Art Gallery, where works created during the first series will be put on display.
However, a sneak peek at the episode shared exclusively with Metro.co.uk shows Grayson in a state of despondency, as it’s revealed the exhibition may not be able to open as a result of nationwide lockdown.
‘Here we are, at the brink of opening, and now we can’t. How much was riding on this?’ Grayson says in the clip.
‘This was going to be the show that rebooted the gallery, that relaunched it,’ Alistair Hudson, director of Manchester Art Gallery and Whitworth Art Gallery, tells Grayson.
‘And now, to have been closed since March, this was the show that suddenly brought people back in the doors again.’
Grayson appears perturbed by this statement, as he looks around the gallery while playing with the zip on his fleece.
‘Yeah. The unwelcome guest at the celebration has returned unfortunately,’ he says, grimacing at the camera.
Grayson explains in the special that it has been a ‘long journey’ to creating the Art Club exhibition, which is facing yet another hurdle.
‘I feel like we’ve come from all those months of lockdown, we’ve been through Art Club, we’ve been through all the events since, and then here we are on the eve of opening,’ he states.
The artist says he feels ‘moved’ looking at all the artworks, which are ‘all treated with such respect and love’.
‘And so I’m so frustrated really, that here we are, on this very day, about to go into lockdown again and we don’t know when people will be able to come here and see this marvellous exhibition and it’s really sad,’ he adds.
The special will see Grayson share socially-distanced reunions with some members of the public whose pieces were selected for the exhibition.
He will also be joined by several other artists and famous guests who were featured previously on the series.
Grayson’s Art Club: The Exhibition airs on Friday December at 8pm on Channel 4.