Neo-Pop artist Jeff Koons
(American, b.1955) inspires conflicted reactions to his over-sized sculptures of banal and sometimes shocking objects; some consider his work to be historically significant, while others view him as an attention-seeker who panders to the high-end art world. Educated at the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Maryland, he was initially supported by his career on Wall Street. By the early 1980s, Koons was able to establish a studio staffed by assistants.
He quickly cultivated a media persona by hiring image consultants and placing strategic advertisements in high-class art publications; his scandalous marriage to and subsequent divorce from the Hungarian-Italian pornstar Ciccolina also brought much public attention. Most famous for enlarged objects such as Puppy
and his huge sculptures of inflated balloons
, Koons also works in series of paintings
, and collage, stating that he is attempting “to make a body of work that anybody could enjoy.”