AO On Site – Basel – Artist talk with Jeff Koons at Fondation Beyeler, Thursday, June 14, 2012

June 14th, 2012

Jeff Koons by Schneider, Sischy and Siegel Jeff Koons: The Painter and the Sculptor Jeff Koons by Jeff Koons
Click Here For Jeff Koons Books

Jeff Koons, the artist; All photos by Caroline Claisse for Art Observed

Adjoint to the week-long Art Basel fete, Swiss museum Fondation Beyeler partnered with American artist Jeff Koons to assemble and showcase key series from his repertoire under one roof, namely, The New, Banality, and Celebration.

Yesterday night in particular, the Foundation Beyler hosted a private dinner at which the pop-age artist himself was present, along with guests Zaha Hadid, Tracey Emin, Stephanie Seymour, and Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn.  Koons took the opportunity to unveil his over-sized floral installation, “Split Rocker”.  Serpentine Gallery director Hans Ulrich Obrist and architect Rem Koolhaas afterward gave the pre-dinner keynote.

“Balloon Dog Red” (1994-2000)

Koons talking

Tracey Emin poses in front of Koon’s sculpture

Koon’s “Cracked Egg Blue” (1994-2006)

Pamela Anderson and Samuel Keller at Koons’ event

Koon’s “Woman in Tub” (1988)

“Wishing Well” (1988)

Another view of “Wishing Well”

Beyeler Director Samuel Keller near “Tulips” (1995-98)

Tracey Emin observes Koon’s work

“New Hoover convertible” (1980)

“Stacked” (1988)

“Shelter” (1996-98)

“Pink Panther” (1988) and another view of “Stacked”

“Michael Jackson and Bubbles” (1988)

“Little Girl” (1988)

“Hanging Heart”, famed for being the most expensive auction sale for a living artist in 2007, earning $23.6 million

“Elephant” (2003)

“The first thing these objects want to do is affirm your existence,” declared Koons. “That’s why I use reflective surfaces. Inside becomes outside: We are the ready-mades.”


“Cracked Egg Blue” (1994-2006) and “Cake” (1995-97)

“Cat on a Clothesline Aqua” (1994-2001)

“Boy with Pony” (1995-2008)

Beyeler’s director in front of “Moon Light Pink” (1995-2000)

50 of Koons’s works compose this extensive show, a conglomerate of three separate series, respectively titled, “The New”, “Banality”, and “Celebration”, all representative of and central to stages in Koons’s artistic life.  The New (1980-87) includes work from his early period, Banality (1988) features traditionally crafted sculptures, and Celebration (1994 and on) showcases his transition to the more glossy, highly polished monuments and larger-scale canvases representing his most recent work.

“Bear and Policeman” (1988)

“Balloon Swan Magenta” (2004-2012)

“Balloon Flower (Blue)” (1995-2000)

View of “Balloon Dog Red” in front of “Tulips” (1995-2004)

The Fondation Beyeler’s showing of Koons’s work is his largest to ever take place in the country.  The exhibition officially commenced almost a month prior to Art Basel on May 13 and will show through September 2.

–L. Marsova

Related Links:

Exhibition Site [Fondation Beyeler]
Jeff Koons, the bridge between high and low art [Swissinfo]
Jeff Koons honoured guest in Basel [AMA]
Jeff Koons challenges Beyeler visitors on definition of art [GenevaLunch]

Jeff Koons: Versailles Jeff Koons by Warren and Bonami Jeff Koons: Hulk Elvis
Click Here For Jeff Koons Books