US-ART-WRIGHT EXHIBIT
The Guggenheim Museum in New York. Photograph by STAN HONDA AFP — Getty Images

This 18-Karat Gold Toilet Is Now Open For Public Use

Sep 16, 2016

Starting today, the Guggenheim museum in New York City really wants to you to give its solid gold toilet a go.

The 18-karat gold, fully-functioning toilet was created by Italian artist and sculptor Maurizio Cattelan, and is a part of an exhibit called "America" at the Guggenheim. The exhibit is meant to "remind us of the inescapable physical realities of our shared humanity," according to the museum's blog.

The toilet is installed in the museum's fourth floor restroom, and Cattelan "intends visitors to use the toilet just as they would any other facility in the building," the museum said. The toilet is also meant to represent an "extravagant luxury product seemingly intended for the 1%."

Business Insider reports that a security guard will be placed at the entrance of the restroom, explaining to visitors that the toilet is a piece of art before they use it.

But the guard is also there to protect the artwork. According to the Gothamist, if the toilet weighs as much as a normal porcelain one does, (which is about 70 to 120 pounds), it could cost anywhere between $1,474,592 and $2,527,872, considering the current value of gold, making this commode a pricy one.

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