Van Halen's Frankenstein at the MET - 2019





"PLAY IT LOUD" exhibit at New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) on the east side of Central Park.

VHND article on Frankenstein at the MET

"Frankenstein," composite electric guitar 1975
Edward Lodewijk "Eddie" Van Halen

Aptly nicknamed "Frankenstein," this guitar was pieced together by Eddie Van Halen from modified factory seconds and mismatched odd-lot parts, then spray-painted. It represents an effort to combine some of the most desirable elements of Gibson and Fender guitars into a single instrument that was not commercially available at the time. Van Halen was continually striving to achieve the ultimate guitar for tone, playability, dependability, and functionality. The unique guitar embodies not only his groundbreaking and unorthodox playing style but also his ingenuity in design and engineering. One of the most recognizable guitars of all time, it spawned legions of copies from other manufacturers and inspired generations of fans to design their own instruments.

Technical Description
--Contoured ash Strat-style body and two-piece maple neck
--25 in. scale
--spray-painted red finish with black and white stripes
--bolt-on neck with rosewood dot inlays; unmarked headstock
--modified Gibson PAF humbucking pickup at bridge, dummy neck pickup, heavily modified pickup cavity routing, single volume control knob labeled "Tone"
--chrome Floyd Rose locking vibrato bridge and nut, recessed input jack, nickel Schaller tuners, hand-cut plastic pickguard, eye bolt strap hooks, rolled duct tape on lower horn for attaching picks, plastic reflectors attached to back, 1971 quarter to shim and level bridge
--Fender neck plate with serial number 61071

Object Details
Artist: Edward Lodewijk "Eddie" Van Halen (American, born Nijmegen, Netherlands, 1955)
Date: 1975
Medium: Ash, maple, nickel, chrome, plastic, spray paint
Dimensions:
--Length- 39 1/4 in. (99.7 cm)
--Width- 13 in. (33 cm)
--Depth- 1 3/4 in. (4.4 cm)
--Weight- 7-8 lbs. (3.2 - 3.6 kg)
Classification: Chordophone-Lute-plucked-fretted
Credit Line: Courtesy of Eddie Van Halen

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 199, April 8 - October 1, 2019

I attended the exhibit Saturday, September 28 and took some pictures-

Charvel EVH Frankenstein
associated guitar story


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