Gilbert and George, as signing sculptures (left) and El Anatsui's Broken Bridge II, (2012) beside the High Line

Gilbert and George head for the High Line

The British artists will have their 1984 work, Waking, reproduced on a billboard next to Manhattan's linear park

They began their career as singing sculptures, miming along to the music hall standard, Underneath The Arches. Now Gilbert and George will raise their work well above the tracks this coming autumn, when a 1984 multi-coloured photomontage by the pair is reproduced on a 25-by-75-feet billboard, at the corner of 10th Avenue and West 18th St beside New York's High Line park. The piece is part of the High Line's ongoing arts programme, which has so far featured work by artists including George Condo, John Baldessari, Sean Landers, El Anatsui, David Shrigley and Maurizio Cattelan.


Waking (1984) by Gilbert and George
Waking (1984) by Gilbert and George

Unlike many works displayed on the High Line's billboard, the Gilbert and George piece isn't newly commissioned, but instead a reproduction of one from 29 years ago, Waking, currently in the Guggenheim Bilbao's collection. This bright photomontage resembles a distinctly secular stained-glass window, with representations of the artists surrounded by a selection of homoerotic imagery.

While it isn't perhaps as shocking as it was 29 years ago, does it remain a fitting tribute to the year of legalised same-sex marriage? Cecilia Alemani, director of the High Line's art program, certainly thinks so. "With all the talk today about urban life and gay marriage," Alemani told The New York Times "it seems even more appropriate now."

To find out more about the planned exhibit, which should be pasted up on September 3 and stay there until October 1, go here. For greater insight into these artists' work, please take a look at our book on the pair.