425-Ounce Gold Bar Covered in Oil at Chelsea's Gladstone Gallery

Share Article

Seattle-area mint delivers on challenge to create centerpiece of Gary Hill's latest exhibit.

Pouring a 425-ounce gold bar is no small feat. As one might imagine, it requires advanced machinery and a whole lot of technical skill; in fact, it's the kind of undertaking that most people would assume only a huge government mint, like the U.S. Mint, could handle.

But, amazingly, this daunting task was successfully completed just recently by a private mint located near Seattle.

Northwest Territorial Mint - which specializes in designing and producing custom-minted products in many metals, including precious metals like gold and silver - took on the challenge of creating the massive 425-ounce bar at the request of world-renowned artist Gary Hill.

The Seattle-based artist required the bar for his new exhibit entitled Frustrum, which is currently being exhibited at the Gladstone Gallery in lower Manhattan's Chelsea art district. Throughout his remarkable career, which spans more than three decades, Hill's installations have been featured in the world's leading galleries, from New York's famed Museum of Modern Art to the Fondation Cartier Pour L'art Contemporain in Paris.

In Frustrum, the near-thirty-pound solid gold bar produced for Hill by Northwest Territorial Mint sits in a shallow pool of oil, over which an animated eagle violently flaps his wings, struggling to break free from a transmission tower. A soundtrack of jarring whip cracks creates conflict with the sensual surrounds of gold and oil, forcing the viewer to confront the deeper ramifications of their union. Engraved in large letters across the top of the bar is the cryptic phrase "For everything which is visible is a copy of that which is hidden." An accompanying piece, Guilt, reinforces the formal qualities unique to gold which have made it a prized material for artists and influential people throughout history.

"The use of real gold is essential to the power of this unique exhibit," said Miciah Hussey, artist liaison for the Gladstone Gallery. "It would not have been possible to convey the work's central theme in the absence of this material," Hussey said.

Creating this giant gold bar required careful planning and precise execution on the part of Northwest Territorial Mint. To prepare the gold for pouring, the company's expert team heated 520 ounces of pure .9999-fine gold - contained in a specially designed Silicone-Carbide crucible - to a temperature of approximately 2,400 degrees Fahrenheit. The molten gold was then poured into a custom-built graphite mold and allowed to cool.

Once the bar had fully hardened, it was carefully extracted from the mold. To conform to Hill's precise specifications, nearly 100 ounces of gold were shaved from the bar before it was buffed, engraved, and ready to be shipped off to New York.

From January 13, and through February 10, 2007, this enormous bar of pure gold bathed in oil is sure to command the rapt attention of all those who visit the Gladstone Gallery to view Gary Hill's latest installation. Gladstone Gallery is presenting the United States premiere of Frustrum, which was previously shown in Paris at the Fondation Cartier Pour L'art Contemporain.

About Northwest Territorial Mint:

Since 1984, Northwest Territorial Mint has specialized in designing and creating custom coins, medallions, and related items of the highest craftsmanship for individuals and institutions worldwide. In addition to its corporate offices and 30,000 square-foot minting facility located in Auburn, Washington, the company maintains a nationwide network of resources, including a die-cutting facility in Green Bay, Wisconsin, a sales office in Springfield, Virginia, and a retail store in The Pentagon. For more information about Northwest Territorial Mint's custom minting capabilities and to see samples of their work, visit http://www.nwtmint.com. To contact a member of the company's sales team, call toll-free 1-800-344-6468 (7:00 AM - 5:00 PM., Pacific Time).

About Gladstone Gallery

The Gladstone Gallery, located in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood at 515 West 24th Street (between 10th and 11th Avenue), regularly features the work of leading artists from around the world. It is one of two galleries in the U.S. representing artist Gary Hill.

Download high-resolution images from: http://www.nwtmint.com/CustomMinting/gary_hill.php.

###

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Mike Flynn
Visit website

Media

425-Troy-ounce gold bar poured by Northwest Territorial Mint for Gary Hill.425-Troy-ounce gold bar poured by Northwest Territorial Mint for Gary Hill.425-Troy-ounce gold bar poured by Northwest Territorial Mint for installation of Seattle artist Gary Hill's installation of "Frustrum" at New York's Gladstone Gallery. High-resolution image available for use, with proper attribution, at http://www.nwtmint.com/CustomMinting/gary_hill.php. Please include attribution to Northwest Territorial Mint with use.Northwest Territorial Mint’s experts pour 520 Troy ounces of molten gold.Northwest Territorial Mint’s experts pour 520 Troy ounces of molten gold.The specially designed Silicone-Carbide crucible glows from the extreme heat as Northwest Territorial Mint’s experts pour 520 Troy ounces of molten gold into a graphite mold. High-resolution image available for use, with proper attribution, at http://www.nwtmint.com/CustomMinting/gary_hill.php. Please include attribution to Northwest Territorial Mint with use. 425-Troy-ounce gold bar is engraved at Northwest Territorial Mint.425-Troy-ounce gold bar is engraved at Northwest Territorial Mint.A pantograph is used to transfer the engraved message from a rectangular steel die onto the gold bar. High-resolution image available for use, with proper attribution, at http://www.nwtmint.com/CustomMinting/gary_hill.php. Please include attribution to Northwest Territorial Mint with use.Northwest Territorial Mint experts shave nearly 100 ounces from bar to meet specified weight.Northwest Territorial Mint experts shave nearly 100 ounces from bar to meet specified weight.To achieve the precise specified weight of 425 Troy ounces, nearly 100 Troy ounces of pure gold are shaved from the bar’s surface. High-resolution image available for use, with proper attribution, at http://www.nwtmint.com/CustomMinting/gary_hill.php. Please include attribution to Northwest Territorial Mint with use.