Preview: Thursday 8 March 2012
4–7pm White Cube Hoxton Square and White Cube Mason’s Yard, 6–9pm, White Cube Bermondsey
White Cube is proud to present the 'LONDON PICTURES' by Gilbert & George. This monumental body of
292 pictures is the largest series yet created by the artists. 72 works will be exhibited across the galleries
in Bermondsey, Hoxton Square and Mason’s Yard. This is the first time that White Cube has utilised all
three spaces for a single presentation by an artist and is the first UK presentation of this new body of
work following its premiere in Hong Kong on 2nd March.
For five decades, to international acclaim, Gilbert & George have been making art that is visionary,
shocking, relentless, moral and richly atmospheric.
In these new ‘LONDON PICTURES’ (2011) Gilbert & George present an epic survey of modern urban
life in all its volatility, tragedy, absurdity and routine violence. Brutal and declamatory, these
brooding and disquieting pictures have been created from the sorting and classification by subject
of nearly 4000 newspaper headline posters, stolen by the artists over a number of years. In their
lucidity, no less than their insight into the daily realities of metropolitan life, the ‘LONDON
PICTURES’ are Dickensian in scope and ultra-modern in sensibility.
Drawing directly on the quotidian life of a vast city, the ‘LONDON PICTURES’ allow contemporary
society to recount itself in its own language. Within the townscape of this moral audit, Gilbert &
George appear to pass like ghosts and seers, alternately watchful and distracted, as though their
spirits were haunting the very streets and buildings that these pictures describe. The ‘LONDON
PICTURES’ seem to comprise a great visual novel, revealing without judgment the ceaseless relay
of urban drama, in all its gradations of hope and suffering.
Michael Bracewell, 2012
Gilbert was born in the Dolomites, Italy in 1943; George was born in Devon in 1942 and both live and
work in London. Together they have participated in many important group and solo exhibitions
including 51st International Venice Biennale (2005), Turner Prize (1984) and Carnegie International
(1985). They have had extensive solo exhibitions, including Whitechapel Gallery (1971–72), National
Gallery, Beijing (1993), Shanghai Art Museum (1993), Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (1995–96), Musée
d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (1998), Serpentine Gallery, London (2002), Kunsthaus Bregenz (2002),
Kestnergesellschaft, Hannover (2004–05), Tate Modern, London, Haus der Kunst, Munich (both 2007),
Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York, Philadelphia Museum of Art (both 2008), ‘Jack Freak Pictures’, CAC
Malaga, Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels (all 2010),
Deichtorhallen, Hamburg, Kunstmuseum Linz (both 2011) and Laznia Centre for Contemporary Art,
A catalogue documenting all 292 of the ‘LONDON PICTURES’ with an essay by Michael Bracewell will be
published by Hurtwood Press to accompany the exhibition.
White Cube Bermondsey, 9 March—12 May 2012
White Cube Hoxton Square, 9 March—14 April 2012
White Cube Mason’s Yard, 9 March—12 May 2012
For further information, please contact Honey Luard or Sara Macdonald on +44 (0)20 7930 5373.