Duchamp fans, gold admirers or anyone who appreciates a shnazzy throne will want to check out the newest addition to the Guggenheim’s bathroom. It’s not a Duchamp urinal, but instead it will be a pure gold toilet by artist Maurizio Cattelan that is an eyebrow-raising acquisition.
After announcing his retirement in 2011, Cattelan now claims what most artist inherently know, “Actually, it’s even more of a torture not to work than to work.” So out of retirement he has come and is marking the occasion “with a new sculpture that seems designed to proclaim his return with an exclamation point, though the piece is of modest size and will not be on view in a public gallery,” according to the New York Times.
Making its debut in May, the piece will be…
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, a preposterously scatological apotheosis of wealth whose form is completed in its function: You could go into the restroom just to bask in its glow, Mr. Cattelan said, but it becomes an artwork only with someone sitting on it or standing over it, answering nature’s call.
In case you missed it, the toilet will be made of 18-karat gold. Of course, it will also be given it’s own guard to protect the treasure of a toilet.