Gerhard Richter

Gilbert, George (381-1, 381-2) (1975)

About this artwork

Gilbert and George are two artists based in London, who work together as an artistic duo. They became known in the late 1960s as ‘living sculptures’, dressing in similar tweed suits and doing everything together. Life and art were inseparable. In 1975, on the occasion of a show in Düsseldorf, they commissioned Richter to make a portrait of them. Richter made eight paintings in all, using superimposed photographs of the duo in order to suggest their inseparable mutually beneficial identity.

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  • title: Gilbert, George (381-1, 381-2)
  • accession number: AR00345
  • artist: Gerhard RichterGerman (born 1932)
  • depicted: Gilbert & George
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Painting
  • date created: 1975
  • measurements: 68.40 x 63.10 x 4.50 cm
  • 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: © Gerhard Richter
  • photographer: Antonia Reeve
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter

Richter was born in Dresden, where he studied from 1952 to 1957. In 1961 he settled in Düsseldorf, where he studied under Joseph Beuys. In 1963 he began using images from press photographs and amateur snapshots in his paintings, deliberately blurring them in order to undermine and challenge the boundaries of painting and photography. In the early 1970s Richter explored theoretical ideas about colour in a series of colour charts. In a similar systematic way he made a large number of grey paintings in which he experimented with texture and brushstrokes. Since the late 1970s Richter has painted an ongoing series of colourful abstractions and alternated these with painstakingly accurate renderings in paint of photographs of landscapes, people and still lifes.