Jeff Koons’ Gazing Ball Paintings Is Another Gagosian Crowd-Pleaser


If you're looking to take a culture break any time during the coming weeks of the holiday season, but don't feel like dealing with the mobs at MoMA or the Met  (remember: the new Whitney is fine even when it's crowded), a wander around the Chelsea gallery district is always a solid option. And as an anchor exhibition, the one you use to lure your less-than-enthusiastic art-viewing companions (c'mon guys it's just for an hour or so! and then we can go eat!), your best bet is probably Gagosian's latest blockbuster, the fun and lively (and interesting) Gazing Ball Paintings by one of the world's biggest art stars, Jeff Koons.      


Jeff Koon's Gazing Ball Paintings at the Gagosian Gallery

Filling Gagosian's huge space on 21st Street, Gazing Ball Paintings takes a simple idea and blows it out to such extremes–there are 35 of these things here, spread out among several galleries–that you can't help but be enchanted… or, at least, look forward to what Koons has in store for you around the next corner. As you can see from the photos, for his latest series Koons faithfully recreates masterworks of Western painting (or, I should say, his army of assistants have recreated the masterworks, but Koons insists that they've all been done with actual brushstrokes, no printing involved), and places one of his specially-commissioned, blue, super-reflective "gazing balls" on a simple aluminum shelf, centered, near the bottom.


What To Expect From Jeff Koons Gazing Ball Paintings

The effect of this juxtaposition of surface and visual quality, texture and color palette, is jarring in a delightful way. Here is the as-ever-enigmatic Mona Lisa with a big, almost otherworldly blue ball jutting out from here midsection. Manet's playful Luncheon on the Grass gets a ball, as does Gericault's heroic Raft of the Medusa. And here's a brooding Rembrandt self portrait (wearing a hat) with a shiny ball, and a Turner, a Klimt, a Picasso, a Titian… part of the fun here is seeing which of the old masters you'll discover next. And the other part of the fun is taking selfies, your fun-house-distorted reflection put into the mix. Certain to entertain even the most reluctant gallery goer, at least for a little while.


For More Information on Jeff Koons Gazing Ball Paintings

Jeff Koons: Gazing Ball Paintings will at the Gagosian's 522 West 21st Street location through December 23. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. 


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