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It is Frank Gehry’s numerous different jobs and his own question to himself – what indeed makes him fulfilled, that make a person like him an inspirational icon of the contemporary pursuit of happiness and a successful career.

Arch2o-Fish Lamps - Frank Gehry (10)

Courtesy of  Frank Gehry

His childhood reminiscence of constructing fantastical sceneries, cities, and buildings out of scrap from his grandfather’s hardware store and being educated in this in a rather artistic way by his grandmother is what makes his design modus operandi exceptional to the architectural world. And this is the key factor that helps him realize architecture is the pathway to pursue.

Arch2o-Fish Lamps - Frank Gehry (13)

Courtesy of  Frank Gehry

Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills and Paris hence proudly present the 83-years-old architect and artist’s latest series of fish lamps for Formica. The work was in fact first commissioned in 1983 when Gehry was asked to design objects using the company’s new plastics. However, those sculptures would have not looked as inventive and successful if Gehry hadn’t made one simple ‘mistake’ – to drop the ColorCore material on the ground making it shatter into pieces.

Arch2o-Fish Lamps - Frank Gehry (8)

Courtesy of  Frank Gehry

Back at that time, being an architect to experiment with deconstructed forms, Gehry therefore never allowed for the prohibition of failure to kill his sense for innovation. The outcome of the ‘mistake’ – he becomes inspired by the shattered pieces reminiscent of fish scales. To his design rationale, he adds an even more profound explanation about the idea to model fish objects and again, it is based on his childhood experience and memories:

Arch2o-Fish Lamps - Frank Gehry (11)

Courtesy of  Frank Gehry

“In Toronto, when I was very young, my grandmother and I used to go to Kensington, a Jewish market, on Thursday morning. She would buy a carp for gefilte fish. She’d put it in the bathtub, fill the bathtub with water, and this big black carp–two or three feet long–would swim around in the bathtub and I would play with it. I would stand up there and watch it turn and twist . . .” (http://www.fastcodesign.com)

Gehry’s fascination over the architectural character of the carp fish has grown into a field of study of his own, referring to the creature as the ‘perfect form’ and conclusively becomes his language. The Fish lamps will be on display in the Gagosian gallery, L.A. until 14th February 2014, and until 9th March 2014 in Paris.

By Yoana Chepisheva

Courtesy of  Frank Gehry

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