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Jeff Koons

New Paintings and Sculpture

May 9–June 29, 2013
West 24th Street, New York

Installation view  Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view  Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view  Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view  Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Works Exhibited

Jeff Koons, Antiquity 1, 2009–12 Oil on canvas, 108 × 84 inches (274.3 × 213.4 cm)© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Antiquity 1, 2009–12

Oil on canvas, 108 × 84 inches (274.3 × 213.4 cm)
© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Antiquity 3, 2009–11 Oil on canvas, 102 × 138 inches (259.1 × 350.5 cm)© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Antiquity 3, 2009–11

Oil on canvas, 102 × 138 inches (259.1 × 350.5 cm)
© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Antiquity (Farnese Bull), 2009–12 Oil on canvas, 108 × 84 inches (274.3 × 213.4 cm)© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Antiquity (Farnese Bull), 2009–12

Oil on canvas, 108 × 84 inches (274.3 × 213.4 cm)
© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Balloon Venus (Magenta), 2008–12 Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating 102 × 48 × 50 inches (259.1 × 121.9 × 127 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Balloon Venus (Magenta), 2008–12

Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating 102 × 48 × 50 inches (259.1 × 121.9 × 127 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions
© Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Metallic Venus, 2010–12 Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating 100 × 52 × 40 inches (254 × 132.1 × 101.6 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions © Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Metallic Venus, 2010–12

Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating 100 × 52 × 40 inches (254 × 132.1 × 101.6 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions
© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Balloon Swan (Blue), 2004–11 Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating, 138 × 119 × 94 inches (350.5 × 302.3 × 238.8 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Balloon Swan (Blue), 2004–11

Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating, 138 × 119 × 94 inches (350.5 × 302.3 × 238.8 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions
© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Balloon Rabbit (Yellow), 2005–10 Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating, 168 × 107 × 80 ¾ inches (426.7 × 271.8 × 205.1 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Balloon Rabbit (Yellow), 2005–10

Mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating, 168 × 107 × 80 ¾ inches (426.7 × 271.8 × 205.1 cm), 1 of 5 unique versions
© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Hulk (Wheelbarrow), 2004–13 Polychromed bronze, mixed media, and live flowering plants, 68 × 48 × 84 inches (172.7 × 121.9 × 213.4 cm), edition of 3© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

Jeff Koons, Hulk (Wheelbarrow), 2004–13

Polychromed bronze, mixed media, and live flowering plants, 68 × 48 × 84 inches (172.7 × 121.9 × 213.4 cm), edition of 3
© Jeff Koons. Photo: Rob McKeever

About

Gagosian is pleased to present Jeff Koons’s first major exhibition at Gagosian New York, following exhibitions at Gagosian London and Gagosian Los Angeles over the last decade. It takes the form of a rich sampling of several major bodies of recent work, demonstrating how Koons’s themes and formal approaches continue to overlap and interpenetrate across time.

With sources as diverse as children’s art, comic-book characters, and figures from classical antiquity, Koons continues to draw a common thread through cultural history, creating works that attempt to touch the core of the human psyche. Addressing various conceptual constructs including the new, the banal, and the sublime, he has taken his work from its literal, deadpan beginnings in readymades to baroque creations that extol innocence, beauty, sexuality, and happiness in confounding combinations of abstraction, figuration, sumptuous effect, and pure spectacle.

The Antiquity paintings (2009–13) pulse with complex layerings of image, reference, and chromatic nuance as Koons explores the historical oscillation of form in painting and sculpture, the movement back and forth between two and three dimensions, that underpins so much of his own artwork. At the center of each scene is a famous ancient or classical sculpture—so meticulously rendered in oil paint as to suggest both the third dimension and the stone out of which it is carved—symbolizing love, ardor, potency, or fertility. Images of popular figurines or figures of popular culture, scaled to the same size as the sculptures, serve to further conflate the aesthetic registers of each painterly composition. The equally detailed backdrops include an Arcadian vision, a tiling of other artworks, and an expressionistic abstraction.

Two outsized Venus sculptures in mirror-polished stainless steel are the first sculptures to be completed in the Antiquity series. In one, Koons represents the much-emulated classical erotic subject, the Callipygian Venus or Venus of the round buttocks, as a gleaming turquoise monochrome. The other is an astonishing interpretation of one of the world’s earliest known sculptures, the fecund Venus of Willendorf. The extreme contours of the original small figurine, transposed into a twisted balloon and enlarged to a colossal scale, become a complex of reflective magenta curves approaching total abstraction.

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