JEFF KOONS CRACKED EGG FOR AUCTION AT CHRISTIE’S

Christie’s will present a central sculpture from Jeff Koons’ highly acclaimed Celebration series at the Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction on 13 February 2014 in London. A key work by the world’s most expensive living artist at auction, Cracked Egg (Magenta) is the most significant work by Koons to be offered in London since 2008 and is expected to realize £10 million to £15 million. This is the first time a Cracked Egg has come to auction.

Cracked Egg (Magenta) plays with the fragile nature of the egg to explore themes of the ephemeral and the eternal. The fragments of shell emphasize the fusion of opposites, appearing simultaneously organic and synthetic, fragile and resilient. To contrast the vulnerability of the eggshell, Koons managed to perfect casting techniques that result in a mirror-sheen surface that is virtually indestructible. As the artist explains, “I was interested in the dialogue with nature and aspects of the eternal, the here and now, the physical with the ephemeral… the symmetrical and asymmetrical, a sense of the fertile …” (J. Koons, quoted in P. Schuster ‘In Conversation with Jeff Koons’, in A. Hüsch (ed.), Jeff Koons: Celebration, exh. cat., Berlin, 2008).

Cracked Egg (Magenta) is the most significant work by Koons to be offered in London since 2008 when Balloon Flower (Magenta) sold for £12.9 million – a record price at the time. Works from Koons’ much-admired Celebration series, which he embarked upon in the 1990s, represent the top five prices for works by the artist at auction. The most recent record was set at Christie’s New York in 2013 which saw Balloon Dog (Orange) selling for $58.4 million, setting a new world auction record for a living artist, and becoming the most expensive contemporary art sculpture ever sold.

Standing at almost two metres tall, the monumental Koons’ Cracked Egg (Magenta) conjures a sense of wonder in the viewer, amplified through both its huge scale and its mesmerising reflective surface. Its polished shell is split open to reveal a glistening mirrored interior. The pristine perfection of the two reflective surfaces is the culmination of years of arduous research and development. Simultaneously presenting its interior and exterior, the hyper-reflective steel makes a dazzling visual impression induced by the combination of the immaculate gleam of the magenta shell against the silvery flashes of its interior.

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