Grayson Perry – on a mission to shock

Grayson Perry, the talented ceramicist and art documentary presenter, has caused a stir by suggesting the pandemic will clear the arts scene of ‘dead wood’. Given that hundreds of gallery and museum staff face losing their job, his remarks were deemed ‘out of touch and unempathetic’ as well as ‘disgraceful’. Outrage and provocation always were his metier since he was as well known for his transvestite alter-ego Claire, as for his creative achievements.

   He was born 24 March 1960 at 6.50am Chelmsford, England, and as expected has a contrarian Mars in Aquarius quadrupled in strength by being conjunct an Aquarius Moon in the 11th and opposition Uranus in the 5th.  He also has grandstanding Pluto in his 5th which can be creative and attention grabbing.

  His 12th house Aries Sun is in an expansive square to Jupiter and on the focal point of a Yod to Pluto sextile Neptune which will foster an ambitious streak though his sense of self-worth will teeter from too little to too much frequently. He does have a talented Half Grand Sextile of Venus Mercury in Pisces in a passionate opposition to Pluto sextile Neptune and Jupiter in Capricorn – so he has been blessed with ability and luck. Though he’s also always been under a fair amount of strain – he has another quincunx of Uranus to a 10th house Saturn.

He had a tough childhood, with his parents splitting when he was 7 because of his mother’s adultery and he inherited a violent stepfather. He hasn’t spoken to his mother in two decades and is now married to a psychotherapist with a daughter. Much of his work has an explicit sexual content, some of it sadomasochistic and abusive.

   The Moon Mars opposition Uranus does explain his ruptured relationship with his unpredictable and angry mother which is what stokes his need to be maverick and shock. He has described her as mentally ill and refused to reconcile with her even when she was dying.

  He is married to psychotherapist Philippa Perry, 1 November 1957, who is a Sun, Neptune and Mercury in Scorpio with a Pisces/Aquarius Moon. It’s an odd mix but they’ve been together for two decades so obviously it works. Her Sun Neptune falls in his 7th close to his Neptune so arguably his artistic and her healing careers soak up the non-committal Neptune. Her Moon may conjunct his Venus if she’s a late day baby and her Venus falls in his 9th for an intellectual and affectionate connection.

4 thoughts on “Grayson Perry – on a mission to shock

  1. He now says his words were taken out of context. And – Mercury-Venus-Neptune – says this, according to the BBC website:

    “At this terrible time for the arts I’d like to clarify that I was CERTAINLY not referring to the loss of people’s jobs and opportunities in the arts, or to art galleries having to close due to the virus,” he said.

    “I hope my hard work in support of the arts has shown how much I believe art is for us all and brings joy to amateurs and professionals alike. In times of hardship we need the arts more than ever.”

    On some levels, I do see where he’s coming from, but it was clumsily put. There’s an awful lot of money and big business involved in the arts in general, which makes an uneasy partnership with “the arts”. I don’t know what the answer is. But we do need all joyful expressions of creativity right now, we really do.

  2. Perry is right. Covid is causing a shakeout, not just in the arts, but in all areas including politics. The tedious outrage-ometer will go off over anything. Maybe a few more planets in Aquarius will cool things down.

  3. Might be that I have a high treshold for outragious statements, given my husband is an Aries Sun (among other planets) and Aquarius Mars, but I can see what Grayson Perry is coming from, having heard similar assertion first from an internationally renowned sculptor hailing from and living in the small rural town I grew up at. He was grew up at a farm and first studied to become a metalwork teacher, and never quite got over of how idle and helpless some more “patrician” people in those circles were. I probably should look up his astrology, I think I’d find something similar there.

    I also have to say, I’m kind of looking forward to a time I can return to be outraged by statements of artists and other celebrities, rather than people making important decisions for us. For instance, Kim Kardashian’s “well screened” 40th anniversary party on a private island or a holograph of his father Kanya – who I think has now put political aspirations to a halt at least for a while – got to her as a present.

  4. I suspect this is what we have to look forward to as Jupiter/Saturn then Pluto move into Aquarius. It’s all about dispassionate progress with no care for the human cost.

    I say this as an Aqua mars/North node myself who has often annoyed people who’s egos are over-invested.

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