Everyone says the Pet Shop Boys are the "Gilbert and George of pop music," however, no one has said G&G are the PBB of material art, for some reason. With PSB, Neil does most of the talking and Chris is selectively mute. With G&G, both speak for an equal amount of time, even as one of them speaks English as a second language. Both groups don't do 100% to identify as gay artists. Both groups, admirably, seem to embrace multiculturalism. Still, you might have to be a hardcore fan of G&G to like this disc. For novices, it's doesn't speak about where they grew up, how was art school for them, etc. It's just a one-hour Q&A while they walk through a gallery hosting their retrospective. If you don't like intellectual jerking regarding modern art, this may bore you to tears. Some of the stuff they say just doesn't make sense. They try to say they don't show women in their art because they are feminist. How does ignoring women make you a feminist!? They are right that much art exploits women as sex objects, but there is a golden mean between exploiting women and avoiding them. Later, they say, "We won't embrace the word homoerotic until people begin saying lesboerotic and heteroerotic." People do use those terms. "Lesboerotic" has been applied to Kahlo's and O'Keeffe's work and "heteroerotic" to Jeff Koons' oeuvre. I actually wish homophobia in the art world would have come up more. PSB admits that the homoeroticism in their video "Domino Dancing" may have killed their success in the US. For G&G, I imagine that many homophobic art buyers would not want to purchase installations where they are embracing each other or being seen butt-booty-naked with they British bacon all hangin' out. The art world is not without bigotry and G&G says little to decry that here.
Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to see this major exhibition while it was at the Tate Modern but Tim Marlow with Gilbert & George does an impressive job of brining it to the screen. Not for the faint hearted some of the work is quite provocative if not a bit gross!
One person found this helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?