The series of contemporary art exhibitions at Palazzo Strozzi continues with Jeff Koons Shine. Works by the renowned and controversial American artist will be on display from October 2 to January 30, 2022 in a major exhibition featuring over 30 of the artist’s most celebrated works from the mid-70s through to the present day. The show was developed in close collaboration with the artist, and curated by Arturo Galansino and Joachim Pissario. The iconic pieces are on loan from some of the world’s most important collections and museums, coming together in Florence for the dazzling display.
The show explores the concept ‘Shine’ in Koons’ work, grappling with the ambiguous ideas of being and seeming, or truth and sensation. Spanning a career of 40 years, the glistening metal sculptures at times replicate luxury objects like the Baccaret Crystal Set (1986), and at others, inflatables such as Balloon Dog (Red), 1994-2000.
Academic yet merged with popular culture, references to art history and consumer society place viewers in the position to question our relationship with reality, and also with the very concept of a work of art.
‘Balloon Dog (Red)’ 1994-2000
The American artist’s works place the observer before a mirror in which they can see themselves within their environment and therefore experience affirmation. Koon elaborates, “The job of the artist is to make a gesture and really show people what their potential is. It’s not about the object, and it’s not about the image; it’s about the viewers. That’s where the art happens.”
‘Balloon Monkey (Blue)’ 2006-2013 in the courtyard at Palazzo Strozzi. Ph/ Andrea Paoletti
The courtyard of Palazzo Strozzi will host Balloon Monkey (Blue) 2006-2013, created from mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent colour coating.
Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi Director General and exhibition co-curator Arturo Galansino commented “We at Palazzo Strozzi have been working for several years to produce this major exhibition on Jeff Koons, one of the most significant figures in contemporary art at the global level, thus continuing the sequence of exhibitions that Palazzo Strozzi has devoted to the most important players on the contemporary art scene”.