Gilbert & George

THIRST (1982)

About this artwork

“We are driven by everything that is slightly taboo, by the forbidden.” Sexuality is a central theme of Gilbert & George’s work, which is explored in images that are often provocative and disconcerting. ‘Hunger’ and ‘Thirst’ show a sexual act that is depicted in a cartoon-like, almost diagrammatic, manner. The artists have commented on these works: “we wanted to confront the viewers in a museum, as normally you don’t see this stuff, and make them accept it. It was done in a cartoon like way because in reality they would never have been accepted at that time”.

  • title: THIRST
  • accession number: AR00174
  • artist: Gilbert & GeorgeEnglish (Gilbert Proesch born 1943; George Passmore born 1942)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: 1982
  • measurements: 242.40 x 202.00 x 25 cm (16 panels, framed)
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
  • copyright: © GILBERT & GEORGE
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Gilbert & George

Gilbert & George

Italian-born Gilbert Proesch and Englishman George Passmore met and studied at St Martin's School of Art in London in 1967 and have made only collaborative works since then. In 1969 they performed the first of several 'living sculptures', which rapidly launched their international careers as leading British performance artists. Since the early 1970s they have concentrated on producing large-scale photo-pieces, usually with themselves as the central subject. Gilbert & George state that their aim is to make their art as accessible as possible and that their art and life are one and the same. They won the Turner Prize in 1986.