The blog of yesterday reminded me that Piero Manzoni was not the only artist who used faeces as a subject in their art. Gilbert & George is another example who used the subject in a far more explicit way than Manzoni did. With the canned Manzoni multiple it is still uncertain if the contents is the same as the label indicates , however with Gilbert & George it is no question at all, because the pictures show the subjects as they are.
Still the composition and execution are 100% recognizable Gilbert & George, but personally i like the more society and critical related subjects better and far more pleasing to look at, but just to show that many more artists used the subject it is nice to devote a blog on these 2 great artists.
I first encountered the works by David Robilliard at the exhibition which was held at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam in 1993. I learned that he was diagnosed HIV positive and died from aids in 1988. Before that time he was one of the models of Gilbert & George and found for them others who were willing to pose for them.
During his life he was not that succes full, but after his death his drawings and paintings were finding their way into museums, art dealers and collectors. Resulting in the 1993 exhibition curated by Rudi Fuchs who is a long time friend of Gilbert & George. They must have persuaded him to organize a Robilliard exhibition because on the invitation for the Anthony d’Offay presentation they described Robilliard as “the new master of the modern person. Looking, thinking, feeling, seeing, bitching – he brilliantly encapsulates the ‘Existers’ spirit of our time. This must have been for Fuchs the trigger to organize the exhibition in the Stedelijk Museum in 1993 and publish the book A ROOMFUL OF HUNGRY LOOKS.
Robilliard is strongly related to the 80’s and together with his partner Andrew Heard, they are two of those eighties artists who deserve to be remembered and must not fall into oblivion.( both books are available at www.ftn-books.com
The period between the two World Wars in the 20th century is called the Interbellum. George Grosz lived and worked in those years and reported in print and drawings the daily and night life of the people surrounding him. Brothels, whores, artists, friends….. everybody worth as a subject was drawn or painted by him. These works show daily life on the fringes of society. Rough, sensual and sometimes even ugly, but always fascinating.
Gallery van Voorst van Beest presented a nice selection of these drawings 2 decades ago and published a beautiful catalogue with it. ( see pictures ), but beside this one there are many more Grosz books to be found at www.ftn-books.com