Koonsian self-acceptance.

Continuing where we left off with “Puppy,” a few quotes from the horse’s mouth :

If people were able to remove anxiety, then they would have access to a higher state of consciousness. […] The way to remove anxiety is to accept everything. If you make judgments about things, you are limiting your vocabulary. […] People talk about political art, and they are thinking of a particular slogan or movement. But I think my work has been political, in that I’m trying to let people embrace the power that they have within themselves. I believe in becoming. […] There is a lot of tragedy and darkness in life. But we have opportunities. I find it more exciting that we have so much potential. The idea of becoming something greater, of moving forward. To not take advantage of those opportunities, that is what I would find tragic.i

When I made [Made In Heaven], I was just thinking about the ideas around me. I was involved with banal images. I realised that people respond to banal things; they don’t accept their own history; not participating in acceptance within their own being. I started then to take that into the body. Where do people start to feel guilt and shame and rejection of the self? I wanted to go into Made in Heaven with biology; procreation; looking at nature, and to deal with ideas of the eternal. […] [Your] own history is perfect. That art can be something that can empower you. I’ve always called for art where criticality is gone. That you are perfect for that moment, that experience. Art is about what happens inside you, and nothing to do with being something inside that object. […] The art as a sense of your own potential as a human being.ii

I look at the reflection, at the surfaces, and I think of philosophy, I think of the idea to reflect, to contemplate. For me, everything is a metaphor for self-acceptance, and the ability, once you accept yourself, to be able to accept other people.iii

Why would a Ferrari Enzo be jealous of a Morgan 3-Wheeler ? Or a Honda Odyssey ? Is an Enzo broken because it doesn’t have a fully exposed motorcycle engine out front, much less a built-in vacuum cleaner in the trunk ? We can’t be all things to all people, but we can be who we are. At least in the Koonsian sense.

Jeff Koons' Blue Balloon Dog in Crayon - December 2019

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  1. Via FT (archived).
  2. Via Guardian (archived).
  3. Via Artnet (archived).

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