The Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy is an institution in the real sense of the word: it’s been going for the last 247 years and is the biggest show of its genre in the world. Basically any artist from anywhere in the world can submit their artwork and pray to be selected. This year it was curated by Michael Craig-Martin, a contemporary artist and lecturer, also known for fostering the Young British Artists.
I am not entirely sure of what the selection criteria was, as there was a large variety of types, styles, sizes, mediums and techniques on display. This is by no way a criticism, it is solely an observation to note that there was a lot of different artworks on display, which means that there was something for everyone, in equal measure. As they say, variety is the spice of life but sometimes it can be a bit too much and as such, visual fatigue can set in. I recommend taking breaks and having a few drinks in between, haha. You will find famous artist’s work such as Tracey Emin or Grayson Perry (whose fabulous tapestry I forgot to photograph, I blame it on being overwhelmed with so many things to see) side by side with other unknowns and this sort of democracy is quite appealing. It is also worth noting that most of the artwork on show is available for sale, except for a few pieces by artists that were especially invited to participate by the curator.
As this was the first time that taking photos was allowed, the RA invited a group of bloggers to come along and do what bloggers do best: do silly poses around more interesting objects, walk around with their phones (or cameras) glued to their hands and tweet and instagram while doing all those activities, using the correct hashtag #RASummer. After a short introduction and explanation of the history of the event and a few other details about some of the works of art,we were give our special yellow “All Access” wristband and were set free to go roam the rooms and do our thing.
It must also be said that this was the Blogger Douchebag Crew’s (#BDBCrew) second outing, and with our powers combined we did silly poses around more interesting objects, had our phones permanently glued to our hands and did a lot of tweeting and instagramming and (you guessed it) using the correct hashtags. If you haven’t been paying attention to my blog (how dare you!), the #BDBCrew is me and Axel, who blogs over at Solaris100.
As always, I took a lot of photos and regurgitated them all in here. Enjoy.