Gilbert & George: The Tuileries: 1974

Gilbert & George, Gilbert Proesch, George Passmore. The Tuileries. 1974 314

Charcoal on paper, and charcoal on paper on wood, eight parts, Overall dimensions variable. Gift of Art & Project/Depot VBVR in honor of Christophe Cherix. © 2023 Gilbert & George

Director, Glenn Lowry: In 1967, Gilbert & George met while studying sculpture at St. Martins School of Art, and they have lived and worked together ever since. In 2007 at the Tate Modern, they discussed their philosophy and process of making art.

Gilbert & George: I think it really was in 1967 when we decided that we were going to become the artwork. Everything that a human person has inside of it became our art. We wanted an art that spoke as directly as possible to people. And that meant having meaning and content. We don't want to be confrontational; we prefer to be subversive.

Glenn Lowry: Christophe Cherix.

Christophe Cherix: The piece we have here was ordered as a decor for a living room. It's composed of a number of large-scale charcoal drawings and the titles tell us that we are in the Tuileries in Paris, in this very famous park.  The Tuileries in the early 1970s was a very famous gay hangout. And Gilbert & George are one of the first artists to show the identity as a gay couple, very explicitly in their work.

Christophe Cherix: Two of the chairs, in fact, are modeled after the artists’ own chair. So the idea was to really take the viewer, and to ask them to identify with them, to transport them into their imagination into their own relationship.

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