The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum presented a comprehensive examination of the works of the late John Chamberlain, which is also the first retrospective in the U.S. since 1986. Comprising of approximately 100 works over his 60 year career, exploring the changes in scale, materials, and techniques informed by the assemblage process that was central to his working method. Ranging from his earlier works of monochromatic iron sculptures to his final large scale foil pieces, along the way he’s experimented with foam, Plexiglas and paper.
Chamberlain stated: “One day something—some one thing—pops out at you, and you pick it up, and you take it over, and you put it somewhere else, and it fits. It’s just the right thing at the right moment. You can do the same thing with words or with metal.”
The guiding principle of Chamberlain’s works is rightfully fit and choice; he respects any material’s inherent properties and takes pride in the simplicity of his creations as well as the work’s complex underpinnings. Therefore the title of the exhibit “Choices” pays tribute to the artist’s process of active selection, or choosing which is fundamental to his practice.