Jeff Koons in a huge exhibition in Paris at the Beaubourg Center .

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Jeff Koons in a huge exhibition in Paris at the Beaubourg Center .

Message  JeanPierreD le Lun 9 Mar - 12:24

Everybody remembers the controversial huge Lobster displayed in the Mars’s lounge or the Balloon Dog in Hercule’s lounge in  the Palace of Versailles in 2008. It was among several others huge items ( 15) displayed during this exhibition, works of Jeff Koons
I was in Paris last week and I decided to visit the first exhaustive retrospective devoted to Jeff Koons in Europe. Of course it’s our museum of modern art : Beaubourg which stages this unprecedented exhibition  which makes it possible to fully appreciate a body of work that has marked the contemporary artistic and cultural landscape for 35 years. This exhibition has brought together his work in an exhaustive chronological itinerary covering his entire output. This retrospective contains around 100 sculptures and paintings, and retraces all the landmarks in the artist’s career.
         In order not to be lost among all the overwhelming kitsch, fluorescent rabbits and lots of shiny things, I took the guided tour. I don’t regret it . As a coïncidence I visited last year the Duchamp exhibition with his famous ready-mades which was interesting because Koons often refers to Duchamp .
        The sympathic guide (a female with inflated hooters which totally feated her speech) lead us along the different rooms  explaining that the work of Jeff Koons became increasingly established with each new series. Fragile to the point of being derisory, the first « Inflatables » gave way to assemblages seeking a synthesis between Pop Art and Minimalism, like those of the series entitled « The New ».
The best items have been gathered there The aquariums in the “Equilibrium” (1985) series, “Rabbit” (1986), “Michael Jackson and Bubbles” (1988) and “Balloon Dog” (1994-2000) which became tremendously popular and influenced contemporary visual culture.
If you were in Versailles in 2008, exiting the Queen’s apartments, you could  encounter the 3,500 pound stainless steel magenta/gold Hanging Heart sold for a record-setting $23.6 million in 2007. The high chromium stainless steel surface of the 9-foot tall Hanging Heartis coated in more than ten layers of paint, and took over 6,000 man hours to make. It can be seen in this exhibition in Beaubourg too. It a way to say how carefully Jeff Koons works with a permanent workshop behind him of more than 150 artists all masters in their field .
We may find this exhibition, wonderfull, or  disgusting as the worse product of american culture or lake of culture , but before making your mind about this man and his work it might be interesting to listen to the artist himself at the occasion of the interview he gave in Beaubourg at the opening of the exhibition in November (luckily it’s in american English !). (http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2en6ca_jeff-koons-conversation-avec-bernard-blistene-le-26-novembre-2014-anglais-jeff-koons-conversation-wi_creation).

There is a lot of critics firing Koon’s work,  especially in France, but some are clearly lauding like this one from Jean de Loisy, PDG of the  Palace of Tokyo (infortunately in french, too difficult to translate properly) :
«Franchement, j'en suis surpris, moi-même, tant les images que véhiculent son travail semblent factices, contraire à ce que je crois de l'art. Eh bien, franchement, l'œuvre de Koons est pour moi passionnante. Il est l'observateur non-ironique de l'un des ressorts majeurs de l'organisation de l'Occident qu'est la circulation des désirs. L'essentiel de notre économie est construite sur le besoin d'appropriation de marchandises, de nourriture, de sexe, de luxe, de plaisirs, de loisirs. Pour répandre ses produits, nos industries ont inventé des objets, des images, des couleurs, des codes publicitaires qui sont devenus le paysage mental de l'Occident.
» Jeff Koons en fait sa matière et la remet en scène sans condescendance, sans méfiance et sans naïveté. Il est lui aussi un occidental sensible à l'attractivité des productions du capitalisme. Il en reprend les images et installe au cœur de ces objets gonflés, le vide qu'ils sont censés combler. Il agrandit et combine les images désirables que notre environnement déverse. Il en observe les effets qu'il subit comme chacun, le pouvoir de fascination et de répulsion.
» Il y associe des signes de l'art de tous les temps - préhistoire, antiquité, baroque - avec une prédilection pour l'exagération sensuelle du rococo. Il pointe ainsi la permanence des ressorts de nos vouloirs et ainsi nous met face à ces appétits qui conduisirent nos civilisations successives. Le marché qui le célèbre de façon démente a reconnu son spectateur le plus scrupuleux.

This exhibition will last until end of april and then it will continue  at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, a littler farther for us ….


Dernière édition par JeanPierreD le Sam 21 Mar - 11:21, édité 1 fois
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Re: Jeff Koons in a huge exhibition in Paris at the Beaubourg Center .

Message  JeanPierreD le Sam 21 Mar - 10:52

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