John Chamberlain, Toy, 1961
From the Art Institute of Chicago:
John Chamberlain began to make abstract sculptures— both wall-mounted and freestanding—of painted, compressed automotive parts in the 1950s. Skillfully combining the vigorous gestures of Abstract Expressionism with the playful use of found materials and compositions of Dada and Surrealism, the artist took previously cast-off pieces of sheet metal and then crimped, bent, and cut the usually unyielding material into an imposing form. Toy is atypical in its incorporation of a Slip n’ Slide (a plastic waterslide first introduced in 1961); the work slyly suggests a classical relief and the motif of drapery.
"I’ve dealt with suicide for the past five years. There wasn’t a week or a day that didn’t go by where I was just like, ‘You know, I wanna check out.’ I know what that feels like, I know it comes from loneliness, I know it comes from not having self-worth, not loving yourself…I think that that’s my job, I’m really just trying to guide people and help people. Loneliness is a terrible, terrible thing, man. If you don’t know how to conquer it, it can eat you alive."