new-york

Gilbert & George, The Tuileries, 1974, charcoal on paper, charcoal on paper mounted on wood, dimensions variable.

Gilbert & George

MoMA - The Museum of Modern Art

Gilbert & George, The Tuileries, 1974, charcoal on paper, charcoal on paper mounted on wood, dimensions variable.

This poignant, down-memory-lane exhibition presented Gilbert & George’s early works: ambitious wall-scale charcoal drawings, numerous little books, announcements, invitations, modest photographs, and letterpress productions. These often-elegant typographic efforts dated from the late 1960s through the mid-’70s, not a long time span when contrasted with the artists’ still ongoing and vaunted careers.

In 1967, the Italian Gilbert Prousch (born 1943) and George Passmore (born 1942) from Devon, UK, joined forces at London’s Saint Martin’s School of Art. Their student affectations—can there be any greater fun than being art-school “sceniuses” together?—radically merged the Romantic sentimentality of the Lake poets (think William Wordsworth wandering lonely as a cloud amid the daffodils) with the novels of E. M. Forster (think Howards End, 1910, with the Schlegel girls’ discovery

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