Jeff Koons Now

Today Emily, Ant and I went to have a look at the Jeff Koons Nowย ๐Ÿฉ exhibition at the Newport Street Galleryย ๐ŸŽจ. ย I have never been to the Newport Street Gallery (or actually heard of – it is tucked away on a small street behind Vauxhall) and I really didn’t know much about Jeff Koons ๐Ÿฉso it was a bit of an adventure ๐Ÿ‘ง๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿ‘ธ.

I cycled over ๐Ÿšด and found Emily and Ant at the Gallery, and after strict instructions not to take photos in Gallery 3 ๐Ÿ“ทโŒ, and a stern warning, DO NOT TOUCH ๐Ÿ˜ก anything, off we went.

When I think of Jeff Koon’s ย ๐Ÿฉ work, I think of the huge ‘balloon’ dogs ๐Ÿฉ๐ŸŽˆ, in bright metallic colours ๐Ÿ’™, which are just so fun. ย There is something really playful about them, I love the child’s party trick toy blown up to a massive scale ๐Ÿฉ. ย There are sadly ๐Ÿ˜ข no dogs ย in this exhibition – but there is a ‘Balloon Monkey’ ๐Ÿ’๐ŸŽˆ which we enjoyed, it really is very very shiny ๐Ÿ’™. ย It is made out of mirror polished stainless steel with a transparent colour coating. ย I really like this concept, the creation of a familiar object in a material that is so far from the original ๐ŸŽˆ.

Koons does this a lot, he plays and experiments with different materials often creating strange juxtapositions. ย There is a bronze cast of a life jacket Snorkel Vestย ๐Ÿšฃ, and a giant lump of Play-Dohย ๐Ÿงmade from aluminium, the pieces of which are held together by their own weight.

I really enjoyed the Jim Bean – J.B. Turner Trainย ๐Ÿš‚ ย – made from stainless steel, each part of the train has 75cl of whiskey ๐Ÿธ encased in it. ย The reason stainless steel has been used is because this is the only metal that will preserve the alcohol ๐Ÿธ inside indefinitely. ย In the same room are three basket balls ๐Ÿ€๐Ÿ€๐Ÿ€ ย floating in a tank ๐Ÿ„ in perfect equilibrium Three Balls 50/50 Tank. ย Koons consulted Nobel laureate physicist, Richard P. Feynman, about how to keep the balls exactly half submerged in the distilled water, and they are filled with a carefully mixed suspension.

And then there are the ‘inflatables’ ๐Ÿšฃ, incredibly realistic inflatable toys that are actually made out of aluminium (I was completely fooled) but if you look closely, they are almost too perfect. NO TOUCHING – which is a shame, you really do have an urge to touch.

Gallery 3 is very explicit ๐Ÿ™ˆ and it feels a little like he is laughing at the art world. ย Although he saysย this series is all about ‘the preservation of life, the continuation of life’, these really very lurid images ๐Ÿ™Š feel a little out of place in the exhibition. ย The other works are pushing the boundaries of ‘readymades’, experimenting with metal and suspensions to create works that are not quite what they seem. ย But perhaps his ‘Made in Heaven’ ๐ŸŒ series are also an experiment – he has pushed the boundaries of what is acceptable as ‘art’, and has succeeded.

I really enjoyed the exhibition – they give you a good booklet to go with it ๐Ÿ“˜ – and the more I learn about Koons ๐Ÿ‘ด the more intriguing I find him.

We decided we needed a little bit of lunch ๐Ÿด after and found ourselves in The Ragged Canteen which is a vegetarian cafe ๐Ÿ†๐ŸŽ๐Ÿ just down the road in the Beaconsfield Gallery and the food was really really great – I had a chickpea omelette ๐Ÿณ with all sorts of vegetables and a ginger and beetroot brownie ๐Ÿฐ to take home – and they make a good coffee โ˜•๏ธ.

I would definitely go and have a look at this exhibition tucked away on Newport Street – and definitely stop off for a brownie after ๐Ÿ˜ƒ.

Alice xxx

Reflection ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ’™


Balloon Monkey (Blue), mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent colour coating
Jim Beam – J.B. Turner Train, stainless steel, bourbon
And in black and white
Three Ball 50/50 Tank (Spalding Dr. JK Silver Series), glass, steel, distilled water, three basketballs
Acrobat – polychromed aluminium, galvanised steel, wood, straw
And a nice photo to finish – Elephant, mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent colour coating
A sweet pic of Ant and Emily
Home again with my brownie and booket and glitter bag