New York

Gilbert & George

Sonnabend Gallery

Nothing could have better captured the spirit of more than two decades of Gilbert & George’s work than this recreation of The Singing Sculpture. The pair stood together on the plain table familiar from photographs, faces and hands gilded and painted, in their identical tweed suits, swaying and moving in slow motion circles to Flanagan and Allen’s depression-era song of homelessness, “Underneath the Arches,” just as they did in the same gallery space in September 1971. At the end of each run-through, they took turns stepping off the table to rewind the low-tech tape recorder perched on a pedestal, only to climb back on again, glove or walking stick in hand, to continue rotating with the same precise movements for three continuous hours per day. A little perspiration mixed with the paint was the only indication that any physical effort was involved in this self-imposed marathon; otherwise

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the January 1992 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.