The latest exhibit in Gallery 1420 continues the The Great Tapestry of Scotland visitor centre’s world-renowned reputation for storytelling through the medium of tapestry and textiles. Two tapestries tell the life of Julie Cope, a fictional character created by the artist Grayson Perry.
Julie Cope as created by Grayson Perry – is an Essex everywoman whose story he has told through the two tapestries and extended ballad presented in the exhibition. The Essex House Tapestries: The Life of Julie Cope (2015) illustrate the key events in the heroine’s journey from her birth during the Canvey Island floods of 1953 to her untimely death in a tragic accident on a Colchester street. Rich in cultural and architectural details, the tapestries contain a social history of Essex and modern Britain that everyone can relate to.
The tapestries are shown alongside a specially commissioned audio recording of The Ballad of Julie Cope, a 3,000 word narrative written and read by Perry himself that illuminates Julie’s hopes and fears as she journeys through life.