Arts & Entertainment

Art Innovation

Jeff Koons

Lesson time 14:09 min

Jeff explores a variety of the technological tools he uses to create some of his favorite pieces.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Case Study: Metallic Venus · Build Trust With Your Viewers · The Tradition of the Artist's Studio · Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help


JEFF KOONS: You can do anything with your ideas. You can distort them if you'd like to. You could scale them up in different ways. You can execute them very, very precisely, and a technology can help clarify that idea and help you bring it out. I started to work with computers in the late 90s. And I remember making a piece called Elephant, and we had the steel shape laser cut and able to be fabricated. And from there on, I started to work with making more dimensional objects, scanning them, being able to capture their size. And then by doing that, capturing their size, all the details that they have of the object, everything about the object, its folds, its surfaces. But once you scan something with that data, you're able to do anything with it. You can scale it up. You could make something that originally was one foot tall, you could make it 100 foot tall, or you know you could distorted in all different ways. And what's really so beautiful, it's all available to us. And I know that in some form or some manner, we're probably going to be incorporating some of these things because it'll make it easier for us to present our ideas. But it's really a trap to believe that technology will make your work contemporary. It'll make it fresh. That's a very momentary response, because what we're looking for we're looking for information that's really relevant to us as individuals, something that has much more meaning than just something at this moment. So I'm excited about participating really with all of these technologies if there's a reason for it. So in thinking about how I've used different technologies for different works, Metallic Venus, which is right behind us here, Metallic Venus is a large scale, stainless steel sculpture. The surface is brought to a very high mirror polish, and then it has a transparent coating of paint that you can see through. And so you have all of this color and at the same time all the reflectivity of the surface. But originally, Metallic Venus was a small ceramic sculpture, and through technology I was able to increase its size. And I was able to make it 100 inches that we see it today. And I was also able instead of casting it I was able to work with forged steel. Working with forged steel also gives me the ability not to have any imperfections within my metal. When you cast metal, there's a lot of impurities that come into play. Different parts of the metals consistency itself restructure themselves. You can have some of his ceramic shell come into the metal. So these impurities don't end up giving you a perfect surface, especially when you polish it. But if I mill the steel, forged steel that's been pounded and pounded, it has no imperfections. So you can look all over the sculpture, and you're not going to find any impurities. Once the decision was made to work with forged steel, their size limitations to how big the block of steel can be. So a piece like Metallic Venus can't be all cast...

About the Instructor

One of the most important and influential artists working today, Jeff Koons is perhaps best known for his iconic Balloon Dog. Now he’s inviting you to an intimate, thought-provoking conversation about the history, purpose, and pleasures of art. Learn how color, scale, form, and texture can help you express ideas and communicate with others. Leave your self-judgment and fear behind—the world is waiting for your art.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons teaches you how color, scale, form, and more can help you channel your creativity and create the art that’s in you.

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