Gold toilet opens for business

  • Gold toilet opens for business

Gold toilet opens for business

Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan created the fully functional bog for the Guggenheim museum in NY.

An artist created a solid-gold toilet for the Guggenheim.

"It will be a test of the piece, " Cattelan said.

In this undated photo provided by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, an18-karat gold toilet is shown in the museum's 14th floor restroom at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in NY.

Open to anyone who pays admission, it will be on display indefinitely at the museum on New York City's Upper East Side.

The museum says Cattelan intends visitors to use is just like any other toilet in the building.

That's one way to cast a golden light over the mess of toilet training.

Cattelan says his interactive exhibit is about "ultimately reminding us of the inescapable physical realities of our shared humanity". Eager users will find a security guard posted outside the public space, making sure Cattalan's work is kept clean and free of enthusiastic tributes to its splendor vandalism.

As an art historical gesture, "America" references Marcel Duchamp's Fountain (1917), a urinal presented as sculptural readymade.

Cattelan, 55, is known for his provocative sculptures, including La Nona Ora (The Ninth Hour), which depicted Pope John Paul II floored by a meteorite.

Visitors of the Guggenheim are getting a golden opportunity to make full use of one exhibit.

"There's the risk that people will think of it as a joke, maybe, but I don't see it as a joke", he explained to The New York Times.

"The fact that it is very welcoming, inviting for anyone to use, gets to the heart of a lot of questions around exclusivity in the art world and in museums in particular, " Spector said.