Gilbert & George: Scapegoating Pictures


The works in this exhibition consist of collages with a limited colour palette of red, black, pink and the occasional appearance yellow. Many of them take up a whole wall. There is a repeated motif of spent nitrous oxide cannisters throughout the pieces, and the artists' pink faces look back at you constantly. Whatever they are trying to say about contemporary London, it's all rather horrible to look at.

In addition to the residue drug oxide binges, the duo have chosen to highlight the threat of home-grown Islamofascism, particularly in East London before curiously ending the exhibit by encouraging us to "Flirt with a Faggot". None of it is as provocative as it wants to be. Admittedly, it does reflect some trends in contemporary Britain, which is something art should do, but it is hampered by their rebel conservative shtick. The Sun and the Daily Mail also have a rebel conservative shtick, so its not as if this exhibition really opens up any new ways of thinking about these themes.

_Scapegoating Pictures runs at White Cube in Bermondsey until the 28th of September, 2014_

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