Magazine article The New Yorker

Gambling on Art

Magazine article The New Yorker

Gambling on Art

Article excerpt

The main gallery of the new Guggenheim museum in Las Vegas is not an abandoned industrial space, but it looks like one. In a plaza between the high-rise slab of the Venetian Hotel and a parking garage, Rem Koolhaas has designed an enormous box, two hundred and ten feet long, a hundred and sixty feet wide, and seventy feet high. Koolhaas likes to talk about how new forms of communication have made traditional space obsolete, and he has created a "media wall," on which huge electronic images can be projected. The deep trench running down the middle of the space will be covered with metal plates or left open to expose galleries on the level below. In Frank Gehry's installation for the inaugural exhibition in Las Vegas--an extravagant reinterpretation of "The Art of the Motorcycle" show that was seen at the Guggenheim in New York in 1998--the trench contains a ribbon of stainless steel meant to evoke an open road. …

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