What’s the perfect gift for an artist?

Paint brushes? Too obvious. A Brooklyn Museum Membership? Almost perfect. During the Members Preview & Reception for Gilbert & George this past Thursday, Museum Director Arnold Lehman seems to have gotten it right when he gave the artistic team this unique gift:

Photograph © Adam Husted

In an effort to find the most authentic souvenir of Brooklyn, the Director joked about having gone down to the “heart of Brooklyn,” otherwise known as the Fulton Mall, to find these classic hooded sweatshirts for his visitors. He was obviously having a little fun with his guests since these sweatshirts (with lettering in the Brooklyn Museum’s signature Cyan Blue, of course) are in sharp contrast to the double-breasted tweed suits Gilbert & George always wear in public. Nevertheless, they both seemed delighted with their new matching apparel and to receive this very special memento of their visit to Brooklyn.

Following this very insightful—and entertaining—discussion, Gilbert & George headed down to the lobby where they were met by a long line of Members eager to get their exhibition catalogues signed by the artist. In addition to these catalogues, Gilbert & George amiably signed everything from invitations to prints, and even one Member’s tie…while he was still wearing it!


The final highlight of the evening was the raffle drawing for a limited-edition Gilbert & George print which Members could enter by making a donation to the Museum’s Annual Fund. Although only one Member walked away with this special edition, over 800 Members attended this event and had the special opportunity to get up close and personal with the artist! If you didn’t make it to the Preview, you can still get to know Gilbert & George in our special exhibition galleries until January 11.

Photo courtesy of Brooklyn Museum Member, Stephen Sandoval.

Also, be sure to check out more photos from this event in the Brooklyn Museum Members group on Flickr.