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Brafa guests Gilbert & George bring very British brand of anarchy to Brussels

On show at Brafa: Gilbert & George, Beard Mad (2016) Gareth Harris

Journalists and VIPs at the launch of the 64th edition of Brafa in Brussels (26 January-3 February, Tour & Taxis) were treated to an elegant and impromptu rendition of Underneath the Arches by the gentlemanly artist duo Gilbert & George (who together are one artist, they stress).

G&G are guests of honour at the established Belgian fair and relived their epochal 1969 piece The Singing Sculpture for the assembled grandees, telling fair guests that artists should keep two things in mind: “When you wake up in the morning, sit on the edge of the bed, keep your eyes closed and ask: what do I want to say to the world today? The other thing—fuck teachers!”

The pair marked 50 years together in 2017, and are looking to the future and their legacy so the septuagenarians are converting a 6,000 sq. ft former brewery off Brick Lane in east London into a foundation to show their work. George says that the new space will be ready in “18 months to two years. It is located by the Pride of Spitalfields pub which will then be renamed the Shame of Spitalfields”.