Page 19 - The MoMA/ Guggenheim issue of World of Art magazine (2001)
P. 19

The Art of the Motorcycle

                                The Guggenheim museum’s landmark exhibition, The Art of   on view at the Guggenheim museums in both New York
                                the motorcycle, will inaugurate the Guggenheim las Vegas   and Bilbao. For las Vegas, Gehry has created his most
                                with a new installation designed by Frank o. Gehry. The Art   ambitious installation to date. Featuring curved polished
                                 of the motorcycle premiered in New York at the Solomon   stainless steel walls, towering chain-link curtains and
                                  r. Guggenheim museum in the summer of 1998, where   glass floors, the new design responds to both the massive
                                it drew record numbers of visitors and was heralded as a   scale of the new Guggenheim las Vegas and the materials
                                ground-breaking cultural event. Following its presentation   and craftsmenship of the motorcycles themselves.
                              in New York, the exhibition traveled to the Field museum of
                              Natural History in chicago, and to the Guggenheim museum   proudly sponsored by delta Air lines.
                                                                          This exhibition is made possible by BmW motorcycles and
 The Guggenheim Las Vegas was conceived for the   with the michaux-Perreaux (1868)—essentially a steam engine   Youngblood.
 contemporary painting and sculpture, to architecture and
                               Bilbao, Spain, where it also broke attendance records. The
 presentation of special exhibitions, ranging from
                              exhibition chronicles the most compelling moments in the
                              evolution of motorcycle technology and design, and places
                                                                         The Art of the motorcycle is curated by Thomas Krens,
 Rem Koolhaas/Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA),
                             the motorcycle within a cultural and historical context. more
                                                                         director of the Solomon r. Guggenheim Foundation, in
                            than 130 motorcycles are arranged chronologically, beginning
                                                                         conjunction with Ultan Guilfoyle and charles Falco. The
                                                                         las Vegas venue for the exhibition is organized by the
 approximately 210-feet-long, 160-feet-wide, and 70-feet-high.
 Museum Architecture:     The main gallery in the 63,700-square-foot building is   posters, made available for the first time for the las Vegas   of the motorcycle, questions of reconstruction and issues
                            attached to a bicycle—to the latest and most technologically
 The largest gallery features a 70-foot by 70-foot pivoting door,
                                                                        staff of the Solomon r. Guggenheim museum and ed
                                advanced models. Punctuating the chronology are two
 as well as a functioning industrial bridge crane—hovering
 close to the ceiling and suspended from tracks at either side
                            thematic sections, which highlight custom motorcycles and
 of the space—with a lifting capacity of 35 tons. The main floor
                             post-World War II racing models. In addition, the exhibition
                                                                        The Art of the motorcycle, a fully illustrated, 400-page
 Rotterdam, Netherlands.
 Museum Description:   design, and multi-media art.  advertising and sales brochures, as well as original motorcycle   accompany the exhibition. It is edited by matthew drutt
                             will feature a large collection of approximately 200 pieces
                                                                        catalogue published by the Guggenheim museum and
 which can either be covered with 21 five-ton trench covers to
                                 of motorcycle ephemera and memorabilia, including
                                                                        distributed to the trade by Harry N. Abrams, Inc., will
 create a single level, or the trench covers can be selectively
 removed to reveal the galleries on the lower level. The lower
                                                                       and includes essays about the design and social history
 level is accessed either by escalators or via a 30-foot-wide
                            presentation. The exhibition will also contain a substantial
 lime green processional staircase. A skylight in the ceiling—
 125-feet by 70-feet—features motorized trap covers, located
                                                       video component.
                                                                       of originality, and the motorcycle’s influence on popular
 Architect:   of the large gallery is breached by a 210-foot by 30-foot trench,   is one of the world’s preeminent architects and is the designer   available for $45 softcover and $65 hardcover.
 on the roof, which can either filter out all natural light or be
                                                                       culture, including cinema, fashion, and lifestyle. catalogue
 fully open to the sky. In a gesture to the Las Vegas aesthetic,
                         The exhibition installation is designed by Frank o. Gehry. Gehry
                                                                      authors include Hunter S. Thompson, dennis Hopper,
 Koolhaas has covered the underside of the skylight with a
                                                                      melissa Pierson, charles Falco, Art Simon, and others. It
 large-scale facsimile of the central scene from Michelangelo’s
                            of the highly acclaimed Guggenheim museum Bilbao. He
                                                                      has been published in english, Spanish, and German. It is
 sistine Chapel ceiling. A media wall that is 60-feet-high and
 120-feet-wide comprises the northern wall of the main gallery.
                              designed the installation of the exhibition when it was
 The Art of the Motorcycle, which was first presented at the
 solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in 1998. With more than 120
 motorcycles on display, the exhibition chronicles the most
 compelling moments in motorcycle design and technology. The
 exhibition explores the motorcycle as a quintessential symbol
 of the Modern age. The installation, designed by architect
 Guggenheim Las Vegas and to the materials of the motorcycles
 frank Gehry, responds both to the scale of Koolhaas’s
 themselves. Gehry’s building-within-a-building features
 enormous, curved polished stainless steel walls, towering
 chain-link curtains, glass floors and partitions, large-scale
 graphics, and a sophisticated interpretation of the curators’
 Opening Exhibition:  The inaugural exhibition of the Guggenheim Las Vegas is
 This exhibition is made possible by BMW Motorcycles and
 Robert Goldstein, President, The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino
 proudly sponsored by Delta Air Lines.
 sponsor:   narrative. Thomas Krens, Director, solomon R. Guggenheim foundation
 Project Leadership:

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