JOE LYCETT OPENS THE ROYAL ACADEMY'S SUMMER EXHIBITION FOR BBC TWO

BBC Arts announce that art-loving comedian Joe Lycett will be presenting a special programme looking at the stories behind the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition.



The programme, entitled Joe Lycett: Summer Exhibitionist, will be broadcast on BBC Two on Saturday 23 July, 8pm.


Joe Lycett says: “This programme is one of my favourite things I’ve worked on in a long time. It was such a privilege to meet some of the extraordinary artists and see their brilliant, joyful, thought-provoking and often very funny works. I was massively inspired, and I hope audiences will be too.”


Joe Lycett: Summer Exhibitionist is a celebration of why people love making and creating art of all kinds.

In the programme, Joe follows a fascinating mix of artists submitting to the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition 2022, the world’s largest open-entry art contest.


Joe Lycett is best known as a comedian, but has first-hand experience as a ‘summer exhibitionist’; in 2018 he entered a small sculpture called ‘Chris’ made from clay and a tub of Pringles that ended up in that year’s exhibition...

"However, Joe’s beginners luck deserted him and each year since his artwork has been rejected by the RA judges, showing just how competitive the infamous selection process is.


Joe will bring the contest to BBC audiences by exploring the stages of the judging process and by delving into the remarkable artworks and backstories of his fellow entrants hoping to realise their dream of making it onto the RA walls.

From a self-taught photorealist to a retired primary school teacher, a moonlighting web designer and a contemporary Islamic artist, there are veterans of 20 years’ of rejection and first-time success stories.


Of the 15,000 works submitted this year, only 900 will end up in the final show. Joe brings energy and enthusiasm for the simple joy of making, and delights in getting to know the send-in artists and their work while also unravelling the RA’s quirky traditions.

Joe brings energy and enthusiasm for the simple joy of making, and delights in getting to know the send-in artists and their work while also unravelling the RA’s quirky traditions.


Joining them at the various stages of their adventures, Joe is there to meet the artists as they drop off their works for further judging, as well as on nerve-racking results day, and also celebrates their success when the chosen few first get to see their works hanging in the Royal Academy galleries.

By focusing on the vastness and talent displayed in this huge national art competition, the programme highlights the importance of making art, taking part, creativity and why art matters for all.


Tom Currie, Executive Producer at BBC Studios, says: “Joe Lycett: Summer Exhibitionist is highly entertaining, full of warmth, joy and intriguing characters. It showcases the immense creativity of the British public and celebrates the joy of making, as well as art as a superpower...



"Joe himself is no stranger to Summer Exhibition success after having his sculpture ‘Chris’ exhibited in 2018, and brings his trademark wit, warmth and irreverence to the hallowed halls of the Royal Academy.”


Joe Lycett: Summer Exhibitionist (1 x 60’) is a BBC Studios production for BBC Two and BBC iPlayer. Pictured: Joe Lycett at the Summer Exhibitionist. Image credit: Richard Ansett