Co-curated by Jeff Koons himself, this exhibition features work by the boundary-pushing artist that has never been displayed before in the UK.

Since he burst onto the contemporary art scene in the 1980s, Koons has been described as the most famous, important, subversive, controversial and expensive artist in the world.

The show features 17 important works, 14 of which are on display for the first time in the UK. They span the artist’s entire career and his most well-known series including Equilibrium, Statuary, Banality, Antiquity and his recent Gazing Ball sculptures and paintings.

Koons made his name through the novel use of the readymade and the appropriation of popular imagery in works such as One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank (Spalding Dr. J 241 Series) (1985), Rabbit (1986), and Ushering in Banality (1988). The exhibition also explores Koons’ more recent focus on the art of antiquity and the western art canon where layered images of ancient and modern art meet in Koons’ singular vision. Among the highlights will be Balloon Venus (Magenta) (2008–12).

In more recent works, Koons has explored what he calls his ‘cultural DNA’, using sculptures and paintings from world-famous collections which have personal meaning for him. The Gazing Ball series (2012 onwards) positions perfectly blown reflective glass spheres on casts of ancient sculptures, meticulously painted replicas of European masterpieces, and museum-style plastercasts of mundane objects such as mailboxes and birdbaths. Shown in the UK for the first time are seven works from the series.

Ashmolean Museum

Beaumont Street, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX1 2PH

01865 278000

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Tue – Sun, Bank Holiday Mon, 10am – 5pm

Closed 24 – 26 Dec

Free to all

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