Grayson Perry
Map of an Englishman, 2004 AD
Ink on paper
1200 (height) x 1500 (width) mm
London, England


Grayson Perry, also known as ‘Claire’ in his transvestite alter ego, is best known for his satirical ceramic pots, which won him the Turner Prize in 2003. This is his first etching. In its format it recalls a 17th-century outline map. Instead of familiar place-names of towns and geographical features, Perry ‘maps’ the inner states of mind, phobias, desires and deviant practices of his fellow countryman in a highly amusing and caustic manner. The idea seems to have come from ‘The Map of Tenderness’, which was published in London in 1678 as the frontispiece to the English edition of Madeleine de Scudéry’s novel, Clelia, an Excellent New Romance. The print publisher Charles Booth-Clibborn, who persuaded Perry to take up etching, has generously presented this artist’s proof to the British Museum. It is in a frame specially designed by the artist to resemble the antique frames found in English country houses.


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