Sunday, 30 July 2017

The Ballad of Julie Cope - The Second Tapestry

Part one finished with Julie and her two children separating from husband Dave when their marriage finally came to an end - Grayson Perry's second tapestry deals with what happens next.

Life is hard for Julie but she has gained confidence and found her feet as a single women and mother.
This tranquil image, echoed by the peace signs on Julie's jumper, captures the new sense of harmony in her life after her divorce from Dave.
She holds her children Elaine and Daniel close as they wave to their father in the distance. 
Despite his flaws Dave turns out to be a good father to both his children - Daniel and Elaine are growing up quickly and soon they will be leaving home to pursue their own lives.
The children have left home, and now in her mid forties Julie attends the University of Essex, Colchester. There she meets Rob, an IT technician and divorcee, with whom she falls in love - they find profound happiness together. Rob takes Julie travelling to different parts of the world. Here they are happily embracing one another during a bird watching trip, a passion shared by both.
Life has changed dramatically for Julie - Daniel and Elaine are grown up, and she is now a Social Worker living in historic Colchester, the oldest recorded Roman town in Britain. Here she is walking down the street with her colleagues. She holds a file labelled "Casework 2003" which tells us that she is now 50 years old.
Julie is happy, she has a fulfilling job - she and Rob are now married and very much in love

Julie, now aged 61, is crossing a damp street in Colchester whilst going about her duties. Suddenly a motor scooter, driven by a youth delivering curries, comes hurtling around the corner knocking poor Julie down -
and she dies.
Julie, aged 61 years (1953 - 2014) - an everyday women from Essex
R.I.P 
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This is not the end of Grayson Perry's fictional story;
heartbroken Rob had promised that should Julie die before him, he would build a Taj Mahal – a place of pilgrimage, a shrine, a monument to Julie and to their love
To this end Rob kept his word - 'Julie's House' now sits on the banks of the River Stour in Essex.
To take a video walk around Rob's shrine click here.
There is also a Channel 4 programme here about Perry's Dream House - as far as I am aware this can only be viewed within the UK.

34 comments:

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    1. Sorry I could not make it a happy ending.

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  2. How sad, and yet not, she had a good life.

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    1. There would be no Julie's house if the ending had been different.

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  3. It is an interesting modern twist to tapestries. I think very well done too. Not I am afraid, one with a happy ending. Though if at the end we had seen Julie with white hair, a knitting basket and grandchildren it would have been a rather flat story. ;-)

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    1. Julie became upwardly mobile and was happy for a time.

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  4. I am glad Julie is only mythical .. figures it won't show in the US :(

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    1. Did neither of the 'links' work in for you?

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  5. Dearest Rosemary,
    This is a very interesting, though sad ending sequel...
    Under your 4th photo you write however: 'Dave takes Julie traveling...' but you must mean: 'Rob takes Julie traveling...'
    What a lot of work went into this kind of tapestry!
    Thank you so much for sharing.
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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    1. Deare Mariette - I appreciate you pointing that out and I have now changed it - I really enjoyed seeing both of the tapestries and telling their story.

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  6. I must get to see this piece sometime. I love the colours on screen, I imagine they are wonderful close up.

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    1. I think that I have got the colours fairly accurately, and close up you are right, the details are lovely to see

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  7. I did enjoy reading this and looking at the tapestries. Julie's story really is the 'everyday woman' of my own times, and I saw glimpses of the typical experiences of various women I know, as well as myself. Yes a sad ending, but it is fiction and it certainly adds drama. The colours are gorgeous, and the whole concept very appealing.

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    1. Glad that you enjoyed seeing the two tapesteries Patricia - Julie represents a typical everyday women, who is upwardly mobile, but meets a tragic end.

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  8. Dear Rosemary, Grayson Perry's tapestries are fascinating and strange. I appreciate the art but find it very unsettling. But that is what makes the world go around. Art is something for everyone.

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    1. Dear Gina - I like his representations as he confronts issues affecting many women today in this our modern world.

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  9. Interesting that the fictional character could be just the lady next door. Someone whose life has ups and downs. I wish he hadn't killed her off but had her become a contented grandma in a rocking chair....but. I guess life doesn't always promise us a happy ending.

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    1. Sorry I wasn't able to give you a happy ever after ending Janey.

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  10. I watched the channel 4 prog about the house a while ago which was when I decided I liked Grayson Perry as an artist. Everyone's different but gems and highlights like that one or some of the BBC 4 progs that open my mind to completely new ideas make up for all the reality TV stuff sweeping the planet. When I visited Australia(and the USA) imagine my horror to find they have the exact same dross over there :o)As I say, everyone has different tastes, but for me it's stuff like this that cheers my soul and makes the TV license fee worth paying.

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    1. I am glad that we are both singing from the same hymn sheet Bob - I agree with your sentiments completely.

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  11. This is art I like, would consider to buy it or a copy.

    Greetings,
    Filip

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    1. Pleased that you liked it Filip - I like both of the tapestries very much too.

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  12. Modern tapestry art like this is beautiful. But Julie's ending is abrupt and sad. Often, that's real life.

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    1. I am thinking of Ecclesiastes - a time to be born and a time to die - both of which are shown in this tapestry.

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  13. Wow - I see I missed out on a lot - these are very bright colours! I will read part 1 soon. Thank you, Rosemary! (By the way: I stopped that scammer - at least I hope so)

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    1. Glad you stopped the spammer Britta - I have also had some of 'his girls' commenting here as well - I always send them straight to spam too. Sometimes they put a bit of Thai language on but when I have used Google Translate is is not what you want on your blog!

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  14. Wonderful painting story. I love a lot.
    Hugs

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  15. It's such a sad ending. I have visited Julie's House in another blog. It was interesting to see the inspiration behind it. Sarah x

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    1. I knew previously about Julie's House too, but it was not until I saw the tapestries and understood the story that I linked it all together.

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