Sculptures

Here’s What Jeff Koons’s ‘Balloon Venus’ Looks Like in Yellow

Jeff Koons, 'Balloon Venus,' 2013. (© Jeff Koons, courtesy and the Lyon Biennale)

I don’t know about you, but ever since falling in love with Jeff Koons’s magenta Balloon Venus (2008–12) in his Frankfurt retrospective last year, I’ve even dying to see what the sculpture looks like in the artist’s other trademark colors. (Mr. Koons tends to make his balloon sculptures in “unique editions” of five, each a different color.) So it was painfully bittersweet to walk into the master’s great Gagosian blowout earlier this year and to find the magenta one again. It felt good to be reunited, but where was the next color? Read More

the end of the world

Burned Out on Bali: An Apocalyptic Conversation With Ashley Bickerton

Ashley Bickerton

Near the opening of Noa Noa, Paul Gauguin’s journal from his travels in Tahiti, the artist describes an encounter with the Tahitian governor, “the negro Lacascade, who received me as though I had been an important personage.” The French government had sent Gauguin to the island on “an artistic mission,” but the governor and his entourage, Gauguin writes, believed this “was only an official synonym for espionage.” Of the island, he continues:

“It was Europe—the Europe I had thought to shake off—and that under the aggravating circumstances of colonial snobbism, and the imitation, grotesque even to the point of caricature, of our customs, fashions, vices and absurdities of civilization.

Was I to have made this far journey, only to find the very thing which I had fled?”

The artist Ashley Bickerton, for whom Gauguin is something of a perpetual elephant in the room, moved to Bali exactly 20 years ago to flee a different kind of colonial snobbism—the New York art world. The gallery boom of the 1980s had been kind to Mr. Bickerton, until it wasn’t. By his count, he is now on his third comeback. In August, about a month before his fourth solo show was set to open at Lehmann Maupin Gallery here, we talked on Skype from his home in the tropics, situated almost precisely halfway around the world from New York. I had just woken up, and he was preparing for bed. Read More

Museums

MOCA Los Angeles Delays Koons Retrospective to 2015 [Updated]

A detail of a Koons at Gagosian New York. (Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images)

Poor Los Angeles. Poor, poor Los Angeles. Last year its Museum of Contemporary Art scuttled plans to host Tate Modern’s Damien Hirst show and an exhibition of Richard Hamilton’s work, and now MOCA is saying that it will not open its Koons retrospective in January, as previously planned. The show will debut at the Whitney in June of next year, and then travel to Paris’s Centre Pompidou in October. A rep for MOCA told The Observer, “We anticipate a 2015 opening.” Read More

Champagne

Jeff Koons and Dom Pérignon Collaborate on Special Rosé Package

(Photo by Raphael Gianelli Meriano, courtesy Dom Pérignon)

Jeff Koons has teamed up with Dom Pérignon on a limited-edition rosé package that will retail for $20,000. It is a 2003 vintage, which the company’s chef de cave (cellar master), Richard Geoffroy, tells WWD is “as bold, as provocative…as full bodied, intense, sensuous as can be.” That’s actually also a pretty good description of Mr. Koons’s amazing show at Gagosian Gallery right now. Read More

On View

‘Jeff Koons: New Paintings and Sculpture’ at Gagosian Gallery and ‘Jeff Koons: Gazing Ball’ at David Zwirner

'Metallic Venus,' 2010–12. (© Jeff Koons/Gagosian Gallery)

Jeff Koons’s two-gallery blowout, his first large-scale appearance in commercial galleries in the city in 10 years and the unrivaled event of the spring art season (barring, perhaps, the Frieze Art Fair), is a roaring success, filled with feats of engineering and artistic choices that are as gleefully peculiar and perverse as any he has ever made. Mr. Koons strives to please, and he delivers. Read More