A Swan Song for Mr. John Chamberlain at the Guggenheim
March 9, 2012

Large new sculpture glamorizes the Guggenheim.

Large new sculpture glamorizes the Guggenheim.

Lots of Chamberlain sculptures circle the museum, it looks awesome.

Lots of Chamberlain sculptures circle the museum, it looks awesome.

Some lazy punk took his shoes off at the opening and sat on the huge Chamberlain designed sofa! He’s happy about it too. This is made of foam rubber covered by a parachute…cool!

Some lazy punk took his shoes off at the opening and sat on the huge Chamberlain designed sofa! He’s happy about it too. This is made of foam rubber covered by a parachute…cool!

Here’s Belgian badass Ernest Mourmans dressed in black as usual. His ride is a blacked out Bentley supercharged custom coupe, I’ve been in it, he keeps it real dirty too. What’s he doing here? He financed and produced all Chamberlain’s late work, the stuff the Gagosian Gallery now has for sale. I like the late works, so did Larry and so does the Guggenheim… I guess that’d put a smile on your face too!

Here’s Belgian badass Ernest Mourmans dressed in black as usual. His ride is a blacked out Bentley supercharged custom coupe, I’ve been in it, he keeps it real dirty too. What’s he doing here? He financed and produced all Chamberlain’s late work, the stuff the Gagosian Gallery now has for sale. I like the late works, so did Larry and so does the Guggenheim… I guess that’d put a smile on your face too!

Who wouldn’t want this sexy beast? I’d take ‘em both.

Who wouldn’t want this sexy beast? I’d take ‘em both.

This is ugly... I really like it though.

This is ugly... I really like it though.

Yo! there’s the painter Richard Philips, he’s a great surfer, and a cool guy, he’s into it too.

Yo! there’s the painter Richard Philips, he’s a great surfer, and a cool guy, he’s into it too.

This is nice... it’s called Scull’s Taxi or something close, it’s named for the famous 60s collector (and taxi fleet owner) Robert Scull! Gnarly good. Can you imagine art used to be so cheap a guy who owns taxicabs used to be a major player?

This is nice... it’s called Scull’s Taxi or something close, it’s named for the famous 60s collector (and taxi fleet owner) Robert Scull! Gnarly good. Can you imagine art used to be so cheap a guy who owns taxicabs used to be a major player?

This is <em>Iron Stone</em>, it’s from 1969 and was exhibited in the Guggenheim in 1971, so it’s back visiting again. This is one of two works in the show with car parts crushing washing machines…it’s killah.

This is Iron Stone, it’s from 1969 and was exhibited in the Guggenheim in 1971, so it’s back visiting again. This is one of two works in the show with car parts crushing washing machines…it’s killah.

Plastic bent and crushed… hey, why not?

Plastic bent and crushed… hey, why not?

These are the corrugated works, they are made of air conditioning ducting. One of them used to sit in the old Max’s Kansas City, the place where Chamberlain used to drink and get into fights, Andy Warhol had one at the Factory, too. They are unpainted and they sell for half as much money as painted ones, but I really like them. This one is particularly good.

These are the corrugated works, they are made of air conditioning ducting. One of them used to sit in the old Max’s Kansas City, the place where Chamberlain used to drink and get into fights, Andy Warhol had one at the Factory, too. They are unpainted and they sell for half as much money as painted ones, but I really like them. This one is particularly good.

He also made these weird foam rubber twisted thingies… I don’t care for them but I was happy it was included.

He also made these weird foam rubber twisted thingies… I don’t care for them but I was happy it was included.

Come on, how good is that?!

Come on, how good is that?!

I’ll never tire of these.

I’ll never tire of these.

This is a teeny weeny little one. People say the little ones are as good as the big ones, but people are WRONG. Nonetheless, this little mess is really good.

This is a teeny weeny little one. People say the little ones are as good as the big ones, but people are WRONG. Nonetheless, this little mess is really good.

These are the big works he made at the end of his life. He made them in his own hands with tin foil, then the Belgian studio produced them in really big sizes... not really my cup of tea.

These are the big works he made at the end of his life. He made them in his own hands with tin foil, then the Belgian studio produced them in really big sizes... not really my cup of tea.

See the big tin foil one below? The tables are set for the opening dinner, it‘s glamorous.

See the big tin foil one below? The tables are set for the opening dinner, it‘s glamorous.

Here’s Gugg director Richard Armstrong with show curator Susan Davidson. She’s kinda mean, but she did a great job.

Here’s Gugg director Richard Armstrong with show curator Susan Davidson. She’s kinda mean, but she did a great job.

Each table was named after a sculpture, and the cards were set into crushed tin foil, I really liked that. I sat at the Lord Suckfist table and chatted up Brice Marden all night, it was really fun. Frank Stella was there as was James Rosenquist, Chuck Close, Malcolm Morley and a bunch of other old timers…it was really touching, I almost cried when they gave speeches. Goodbye Mr. Chamberlain, I’m really sorry you didn’t get to see your retrospective, it’s fantastic, thank you so much.

Each table was named after a sculpture, and the cards were set into crushed tin foil, I really liked that. I sat at the Lord Suckfist table and chatted up Brice Marden all night, it was really fun. Frank Stella was there as was James Rosenquist, Chuck Close, Malcolm Morley and a bunch of other old timers…it was really touching, I almost cried when they gave speeches. Goodbye Mr. Chamberlain, I’m really sorry you didn’t get to see your retrospective, it’s fantastic, thank you so much.