Guggenheim Audio Tour Hack Turns Sculpture Exhibit Into Pop Culture Tribute

Guggenheim Audio Tour Hack Turns Sculpture Exhibit Into Pop Culture Tribute

An alternative guide brings John Chamberlain's Guggenheim exhibit, 'Choices,' to life as an artistic tribute to The Transformers.

Allie Walker
  • 2 may 2012

Audio Tour Hack has created a fictional story line, ‘Artobots,’ as an alternative (and unofficial) audio guide to the Solomon R. Guggenheim’s John Chamberlain exhibit, ‘Choices.’ The not-for-profit commentary and art project was created as a way to gain appeal for the exhibit with a wider audience, re-imagining sculptures in Chamberlain’s exhibit through the pop-culture lens of ‘The Transformers.’ The creator’s commented in their press release:

It is an experiment in interactive storytelling and the application of alternative contexts to activate the imaginations of the audience. Created as a respectful homage to John Chamberlain, the Guggenheim and Transformers, this exhibition utilizes the medium of audio tours to democratize the fine art world. It will encourage art fans to experience an artist they know and love through another lens.

It will introduce technology and interactive storytelling to contemporize the museum experience. And it will celebrate a popular culture icon as an art form in its own right, all of which is intended to provide a richer level of engagement for existing audiences and to welcome many more.

The ‘Artobots’ audio guide invites visitors to partake in a futuristic trip– the voice on the track, Patricia Redgrave, a senior professor at Harvard and an expert on ‘The Art of the Decepticon War’ sets the scene for visitors: it is 10 years after an epic war between Megatron and his Decepticons and their bitter archrivals, the Autobots, where the Decepticons completely annihilated the Autobots. To celebrate the anniversary of their victory, Megatron has commissioned a special exhibit at the Guggenheim, made possible by his late and personal friend, the world-renowned American sculptor, John Chamberlain.Visitors become fully immersed in the world of the Transformers as Redgrave speaks and sounds of laser fire and walking robots fill the background.

Chamberlain’s pieces are brought to new life as Redgrave guides visitors through the exhibit–below is Chamberlain’s ‘Shortstop, 1958,‘ remade in the ‘Artobots’ guide as ‘Resistance Was Futile,’ the wreckage of Autobot soldier Bluestreak, ‘the first Autobot to come in contact with the Decepticon invading force.’


Take a listen to the tour below to get a feel for all the action encased in the familiar architecture of the Guggenheim:

Download the full ‘Artobots’ audio tour here (65 Mb, ~27 min)- it’s recommended that you download the tour to your MP3 player or phone before going to the exhibit. The ‘Artobots’ tour can be used until the Chamberlain exhibit closes on May 13.

Audio Hack Tour

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