Gilbert & George

Born: 1942; 1943 in Gilbert Proesch, born Dolomites, Italy; George Passmore born Plymouth, England, United Kingdom, 1942
Nationality: British
Category of Membership: Sculptor
Elected R.A: 15 Mar 2017
Biography
Gilbert Proesch, born Dolomites, Italy, 1943 and George Passmore born Plymouth 1942, live and work in London. Gilbert & George began creating art together in 1967 when they met at St Martins School of Art, and from the beginning, in their films and ‘Living Sculpture’ performances they appeared as figures in their own art. In 1971 Gilbert & George made their first ‘photo-pieces’, which remains their dominant form of expression. The artists believe that everything is potential subject matter for their art, and they have always addressed social issues, taboos and artistic conventions. They have depicted themselves as naked figures in their own pictures, recasting the male nude as something vulnerable and fragile rather than as a potent figure of strength. The backdrop and inspiration for much of their art is the East End of London where they've lived and created art for nearly 50 years. From street signs to Ginkgo trees, from chewing gum stains on the pavements to vistas of urban grandeur and decay, their work is both an ongoing portrait of a city and a reflection on the human condition. Gilbert & George have confronted many of the fundamental issues of existence: sex, religion, corruption, violence, hope, fear, racial tension, patriotism, addiction and death.

Gilbert & George are the first artist duo to be elected to the Royal Academy.

Christopher Le Brun PRA said: “I'm delighted to welcome Gilbert & George to the Royal Academy; the election of two people as one artist member is the first of its kind in the history of the Academy.”
 
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