18k Gold Toilet at the NY Guggenheim
In 2011 the Italo-American Maurizio Cattelan, born in 1960 in Padua (Italy) - at the pick of his career - told the world he was going to retire. However, he recently declared in an interview: “Actually, it’s even more of a torture not to work than to work.”
I couldn’t agree more with him ….I personally have hard time not to work but, maybe, it is the 'blessing and the curse' when you love so much what you do for living!
Maurizio Cattelan is coming out of retirement with a new sculpture that seems designed to proclaim his return with an exclamation mark. The piece is of modest size and will not be on view in a public gallery. It was installed last May, just off one of the ramps of the Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan, in a small, humble room where visitors often feel the urge to spend some time alone!
The room has tiles, a sink, a mirror and a lock on the door. And now, instead of its standard Kohler toilet, it will have a solid 18 karat gold working replica of one. The apotheosis of wealth whose form is completed in its function.
Mr. Cattelan said: “You could go into the restroom just to bask in its glow, but it becomes an artwork only with someone sitting on it or standing over it, answering nature’s call.”
The sculpture’s title, "Maurizio Cattelan: ‘America'," inspired by Kafka’s novel “Amerika,” will result in some heavy-duty interpretations. One of which could be that the ‘toilet bowl’ is a mockery taste of political ultra Donal Trump on equipping gold in the restroom of his private plane.
Cattelan’s work is a critique of the mediocrity of art, its fold against the economic power and a reaction of the excesses of the art market even though he is one of the most expensive living artist.
How the general audience will respond to the piece is anybody's guess.
Neither Mr. Cattelan nor museum officials would reveal the sculpture’s cost. The art-piece will remain at the Guggenheim for the foreseeable future.
Would you like to give it a go …… let me know how it feels!
NB: All images are borrowed from different media and internet sites.