Daney Parker reviews this year's Summer Exhibition

This year’s Royal Academy Summer Exhibition is the best one I have been to. Partly because it was curated by that icon of British creativity, Grayson Perry, which meant the whole exhibition was infused with colour and even more originality than usual. And partly because this was the exhibition’s 250th anniversary so the Academy went all out to celebrate this, including extra rooms describing the history of the event, the world’s oldest open-submission exhibition.  

Insane not mad

I only visited this year’s show once, and there was just too much to see in one visit. As soon as you enter there is the spectacle of a giant, insane sculpture hanging from the ceiling and then you move into the first room painted an acid yellow, and crammed with eclectic pieces, showcasing just some of the huge range of artistic talent we have in Britain, both established and emerging. It was an assault on the eyes and a feast for the soul. 

From Constable to crazy

When it started, the Royal Academy exhibition was a sober affair, containing works from the acclaimed artists of the time including Constable, Gainsborough and Stubbs. Now it is a riot of talent as well as bonkers creatives, showcasing work from the sublime to the ridiculous, from the intricate to the simple, from traditional to iconoclastic.  

No rules! Rules

It makes you proud to be part of a culture where the only rules, as far as creativity is concerned, is that there are no rules.