“Jeff Koons rose to prominence in the mid-1980s as part of a generation of artists who explore the meaning of art in a media-saturated era and the attendant crisis of representation. With his stated artistic intention to “communicate with the masses,” Koons draws from the visual language of advertising, marketing, and the entertainment industry. Testing the limits between popular and elite culture, his sculptural menagerie includes Plexiglas-encased Hoover vacuum cleaners, basketballs suspended in glass aquariums, and porcelain homages to Michael Jackson and the Pink Panther. In extending the lineage of Dada and Marcel Duchamp, and integrating references to Minimalism and Pop, Koons stages art as a commodity that cannot be placed within the hierarchy of conventional aesthetics.
Koons’s new brand of Pop painting cleverly engages other art-historical references, in particular Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism. Lips, for example, is a disjunctive free-floating fantasy. The disembodied succulent lips and drifting lush-lashed singular eye recall the work of Salvador Dalí, Max Ernst, and René Magritte, while the surrounding streams and splashes of juice echo the abstractions of Jackson Pollock, to whom Koons makes a direct reference in another painting titled Blue Poles. His fusion of Pop representations with Surrealist and abstract overtones creates a hybrid of fun and fantasy, forming a body of work that depicts gravity-defying forms of dreamlike pleasure. In creating this series Easyfun-Ethereal, Koons engages both past and present, employing the new technology of computer imagery while recalling various movements from the history of art.” – guggenheim.org
To view more artists who embrace the beauty of both the abstract and surreal, visit Anastasia Boutique, Gallery, and Cafe.