Gilbert & George postal sculptures

Gilbert & George are famous British visual and conceptual artists who have been working together since they met in art school in 1967. The Raymond Danowski Poetry Library contains two of their “postal sculptures,” “The Limericks” from 1971 and “Pink Elephants” from 1973. As Gilbert & George conceived it a postal sculpture was a series of cards with text and image sent out to friends, galleries and collectors.

“The Limericks” is a set of 8 cards and each deals with a specific theme, such as shyness, worldliness or manliness. Each card is signed by Gilbert & George though they are not inscribed and it's impossible to tell who was the recipient of this set. Emory is the only library to own a set of these cards.

“Pink Elephants” is another series of 8 cards, this time with the theme of alcohol. The theme is evident in titles such as “Bristol Cream” and “Dom Perignon” while the verse inside the card recalls drunken times. As with “The Limericks” each card is signed by Gilbert & George while this set still retains its original mailing envelopes, each addressed to the British artist Trevor Winkfield. Emory is one of 3 libraries that own this set; others are held by Yale and the Museum of Modern Art.

More information on these works can be found in Wolf Jahn's book “The art of Gilbert & George”, published by Thames & Hudson in 1989.