18 May 2021

A solid gold toilet

When toilet facilities meet art

Public toilet are usually considered dirty places, gross, and not deserving a mention, thus overlooking how much importance they have had in human history.

From Duchamp to Oldenburg, to get to Cattelan, hygienic facilities, WCs, urinals, have always had a place in the world of art. Over the years several artists “celebrated” these elements, part of our daily life, upsetting their aspect, the shape, the material, and above all their real meaning, up to making them valuable works of art. The renowned “America” by Maurizio Cattelan is a typical example of this, suggesting the celebration of US opulence: a golden WC at the Guggenheim in New York before being transferred to England where it is reported stolen. The last estimate of the work of art was 6 million USD.

Cattelan is just one of the artists who “homage” the wc. Before him it is worth to mention Marcel Duchamp with his “Fountain” dated 1917, and after him John Bratby who in 1955 captured in one of his paintings “The Toilet”.

Claes Oldenburg, on his perspective, eschews the traditional properties of an object transforming a toilet, a rigid porcelain symbol of daily hygiene, into a soft, pliable object, which is made of soft, stuffed vinyl (“Soft toilet” 1966). The object has been deprived of its original meaning/use and turns into a kind of toy, similar to those used by children at the seaside.

The connection between the often gross object/place and its artistic re-interpretation sounds like a paradox, difficult to be accepted in our “modern” society where all that is “dirty” tends to be hidden: the façades of the restructuring buildings, slums or degradated areas, old streets in bad conditions, public toilets…But beauty is in the eyes of the observer, and specifically in the eyes of those who design and conceive urban components. Furthermore public toilets should be an essential element in our town.

We at PTMatic put ourselves on the test with our resourcefulness and our critical sensibility to offer a new perspective. Urban elements, like public toilets, no matter how mistreated, represent a significant component of our urban daily life.

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Toilitech is a brand of PTMatic srl

PTMatic S.r.l.

Indirizzo: Via Matteotti, 146/148
20008 Bareggio (MILANO – ITALY)
Telefono: +39 02 90390002
E-mail: info@ptmatic.it
PEC: ptmatic@legalmail.it

‍P. IVA: 07184370968
Registro Imprese: Cam. Comm. Milano, Monza Brianza, Lodi
REA: MI1941459
Capitale Sociale: 100.000,00€

La società ha ricevuto benefici rientranti nel regime degli aiuti di Stato e nel regime de minimis per i quali sussiste l’obbligo di pubblicazione nel Registro Nazionale degli aiuti di Stato di cui all’art. 52 della L. 234/2012.