Gazing Ball (Picasso Couple)


Oil on canvas, glass, and aluminum

174.3 x 136.5 x 37.5 cm

Gazing Ball (Picasso Couple) combines a copy of the Couple painting that Pablo Picasso made on 5 December 1969 with a royal blue metallic gazing ball placed on the surface of the canvas.

Gazing balls fascinate Jeff Koons, who often saw them in his neighbours' gardens. This object is the common denominator in the Gazing Ball series, begun in 2012, in which the globe acts as a vortex that absorbs the viewer and art history in the same reflection, as the shimmering sphere is always associated with an iconic work of art history.

In appropriating a Picasso painting as a tribute to the world's most famous artist, Jeff Koons employs one of the recurring motifs of his work, the reference to art history and the continuity with the great masters. The artist does not aim for an exact reproduction of the paintings he chooses: the images are indeed hand-painted, as copies are, but their dimensions and textures differ. The idea is to reproduce the idea of the painting and not the work itself.

This work is presented for the first time by Pinault Collection in the exhibition "Jeff Koons Mucem" in 2021.