Since the end of the 1970s they have been combining their photographs
into increasingly larger collages and producing monumental and colorfully
bold picture compositions that are characterized by a strict conceptual
regularity and that aesthetically refer to youth and pop culture.
From 1980 onwards, the topics of body and sexuality have dominated
the work of Gilbert & George. In addition to individual sexuality,
the oversized tableaux, whose narrative structure can be read at
multiple levels, treat such taboos as excrements and sperm and stylize
these taboos into picture elements. In their latest work, Gilbert
& George are more open than ever about their understanding of the
body both as a sounding-board for the soul and the intellect and
as something that cannot be duped or deceived.
Since the end of the 1960s the work of Gilbert & George has been
shown at important exhibitions worldwide, including the documenta
in Kassel (1972, 1977, 1982) and the Biennale in Venice (1978).
On all three exhibition floors and in the foyer, the Kunsthaus
Bregenz is showing a selection of 26 large-format works from the
years 1989-2001. This is the most comprehensive exhibition of the
work of Gilbert & George ever held in Austria and comprises works
from the series "The Cosmological Pictures" (1989), "New Democratic
Pictures" (1991), "The Naked Shit Pictures" (1994), "The Fundamental
Pictures" (1996), "New Testamental Pictures" (1997), "The Rudimentary
Pictures" (1998), "Zig-Zag Pictures" (2000), and "New Horny Pictures"
(2001). On every floor, visitors are surrounded by photographic
tableaux-of up to more than 15 meters in width and 3 meters in height-that
fill the walls and directly confront the visitor with statements
on social and emotional realities which are highly topical.
The hardcover exhibition catalogue contains numerous color illustrations
of all of the works exhibited in Bregenz, a text by Eckhard Schneider,
statements by Gilbert & George, and a photo biography (Kunsthaus
Bregenz. Ed. Eckhard Schneider. Cologne: Walther König, 2002. pp.
For the duration of the exhibition, the lake-front billboards
of the Kunsthaus Bregenz are modeled according to a design by Gilbert