Jeff Koons: neo-pop artist and sculptor
Jeffrey Koons, better known as Jeff Koons, was born. on January 21, 1955 in Pennsylvania in the United States. He is a contemporary artist best known for his sculptures, often very large, always colorful and glossy, including the famous Ballon Dogs , the Inflatable Rabbit or even the Tulips .
Birth, childhood and training
Jeff Koons was born. York, Pennsylvania. His parents are Henry and Gloria Koons. His father was an interior decorator and furniture dealer. His mother worked as a seamstress. In his youth, Jeff Koons helped his father in his activity professional and sometimes did door-to-door sales. door. As a young adult, Jeff Koons undertook artistic studies at home. Baltimore, at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Once his studies were completed, he moved to Paris. New York in 1976. He worked at the Museum Of Modern Art until 1979. At the same time, he began to work on his work. create artistic experiences such as unusual montages, such as the series The New, featuring everyday objects and particularly household appliances.
Jeff Koons's beginnings are not particularly easy: even if his first works were noticed and appreciated by the New York artistic and critical circles, he had to return to live with his parents because he is at short of money.
In 1985, he launched the Equilibrium series. It was then the beginning of success and Jeff Koons quickly opened a studio. New York. He recruited around thirty collaborators, each of whom had a specific task assigned to him in the production of the works of the artist. Thanks to a system of colors ordered by numbers, his assistants can in fact execute the artist's canvases and sculptures, as if they had been painted by numbers. created by the same person.
Since he met success, in the mid-1980s, Jeff Koons installed a more spacious studio, Chelsea, at New York. He employs more than a hundred assistants there. His creations are very varied, ranging from plant sculpture such as Puppy, an immense floral topiary representing a dog, toporcelain sculpture like Michael Jackson and Bubbles, through the decor of sports cars like The 17th BMW Art Car which raced at the 24h of Le Mans in 2010. Jeff Koons also collaborated on with designers from major brands: thus, in 2017, he created, for the Louis Vuitton brand, bags reproducing major pictorial works such as The Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci, Wheat fields with cypress trees by Vincent Van Gogh or even The Tiger Hunt by Peter Paul Rubens.
The art of Jeff Koons is marked by pop art : in fact, the use of everyday objects such as vacuum cleaners and household appliances, as well as the use of colors very lively make it an heir to Andy Warhol and pop art. The use of objects diverted from their initial function also brings him closer to Marcel Duchamp and his ready-mades. Finally, Jeff Koons borrows a lot from; the kitsch aesthetic, through his choices of everyday objects that are sometimes out of fashion, the materials he uses and the sometimes excessively bright colors that he favors.
Jeff Koons uses various artistic techniques: painting, sculpture of different materials such as wood, stainless steel, glass or marble, photography and installations. Jeff Koons also uses computer-assisted creation: this is how he creates works. most often his paintings. He makes a sketch on the computer which is then put on canvas by his assistants.
The artist enjoyed considerable success and acquired his reputation among the great public thanks to its Balloon Dogs, monumental stainless steel dogs in shimmering colors appearing to be made of inflatable balloons. These dogs were produced between 1994 and 2000 in various colors: blue, magenta, yellow, orange and red. The Balloon Dogs are inspired by his Inflatable Rabbit , also made by the artist. made of stainless steel, and created in 1986 according to the same concept of the inflatable balloon. His Ballon Flowers are also created on the same principle.
Jeff Koons is not only a artist, a painter, a contemporary sculptor famous; ber and greet by critics, but it is also one of the most popular. His works sell for prodigious sums: for example, his magenta-colored Ballon Flower was sold for 100%. sold for over £12 million at auction London in 2008.
Accusations of plagiarism
The artist has often been accused of plagiarism and was found guilty of plagiarism. convicted several times; for this reason pay heavy damages and interest. This is due to the fact that Jeff Koons intends to use and re-appropriate existing works. Thus in 1993, he represented a character taken from by Garfield, named Odie, for his work Wild boy and Puppy. In 2018, the clothing brand Naf Naf accused him of having plagiarized his work. even the title of one of his advertisements, in his work Fait d’hiver. Jeff Koons is definitively condemned on appeal in 2021, by the Paris Court of Appeal, at pay substantial compensation to Franck Davidovici, designer of the advertising.
The artist married in his first marriage the Italian actress La Cicciolina (Ilona Anna Staller) with whom he created the series of works Made in Heaven , including a large format lithograph where we see the artist lying down. on the actress in a suggestive posture, as well as several sculptures representing the couple. The work, deemed pornographic, was violently rejected by artistic critics. In 1994, three years after their marriage, Jeff Koons and La Cicciolina began a stormy divorce, during which they fought over custody of their then-aged son. two years old, Ludwig. Jeff Koons marries for a second time the artist Justine Wheeler, a former collaborator of his studio. The couple has several children.