Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Tuesday, 15 October 2013
Turning in his grave?
I've just listened to the first of this year's Reith lectures given by the artist, Grayson Perry, above.
These annual lectures where instigated by the founding father of the BBC - Lord Reith - for the edification of the masses. Lord Reith was a devout Christian and stickler for formality - it wasn't that long ago when BBC newsreaders had to wear a formal dinner jacket with black bow tie, when giving the news live - on radio.
We are coming up to the 100th anniversary of the BBC, and I would have liked to have seen the look on Lord Reith's face when he saw who would be giving the lectures for 2013.
I surprised myself by actually enjoying Grayson Perry's lecture, and I think it made a lot of sense. He delivered it in the manner of a stand-up comedian, and it was peppered with quite a lot of stand-up type observations and got a lot of laughs from the select audience. Being radio, I don't know if he did it in drag or not, as it was never mentioned.
Lord Reith famously had a troubling experience when he commissioned another artist - Eric Gill - to carve the elaborate frieze above the door to Broadcasting House in London. Eric Gill - who was reportedly extremely well-endowed in the trouser department - finished it up a ladder, wearing a kilt and no underpants, in full view of the passing public.