untitled, (fish lamp with chair base), circa 1984 Produced by New City Editions Formica, wire, wood, electric light height 69in (175.2cm); width 29in (73.7cm); depth 25in (63.5cm)
Purchased from Gagosian Gallery on March 27, 1984
Exhibition: "Frank Gehry: Unique Lamps", March 21-April 14, 1984, Gagosian Gallery, Los Angeles
The initial physical production of the Gehry Fish series is largely attributed to a significant development in materials, an advancement in a particular type of plastic laminate called ColorCore by Formica Corporation. A 1983 commission by the Formica Corporation prompted Gehry (and other artists) to experiment and develop works utilizing the then-new material plastic laminate ColorCore.
These technological innovations inspired Gehry to create sculptural lamps where light glows through the scales of the fish. In this example, the creature floats above its plywood chair form base - an ethereal visitor only resting lightly on the fixed and concrete form of the wood base. The medium enabled the artist to create these uniquely fluid and expressive forms, beautifully exemplified in this rare example.