Has Jeff Koons Gone Bonkers?
Forever an egotistical megalomaniac, Koons is obsessed with himself. His inflated self-importance has overstretched all sensible boundaries, reaching the point of no return. He is now suing a small San Francisco gallery for design and copyright infringement. It all began about a month ago when Koon’s lawyers sent a ‘Cease and Desist’ letter to the Park Life Gallery in California. The dispute arose over a pair of cast resin bookends in the form of multi-coloured Balloon Dogs. The bookends are manufactured by Toronto-based imm Living and available in some 700 stores in the United States,retailing for around $30. Does Koons think he owns the intellectual rights to Balloon Folding? Here is the original article.
Complaint for Declaratory Relief; Demand for Jury Trial Filed in the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California, San Francisco Division: (Park Life Gallery represented by Jedediah Wakefield with Fenwick & West )
1. "As virtually any clown can attest, no one owns the idea of making a balloon dog, and the shape created by twisting a balloon into a dog-like form is part of the public domain." I'd like to call to the stand the first expert witness. Dr. Bozo, will you please raise your right hand.
2. "Upon information and belief, Jeff Koons LLC purports to represent the intellectual property rights of Jeff Koons, a retired stockbroker whose sculptures and other works are well-known for copying pre-existing forms and images from popular culture." Ouch. Translation: You are nothing but a retired stockbroker and a copycat, Mr. Koons. For shame. (In Koons's defense, he was a commodities broker, not a stockbroker.)
3. "Park Life participates in fundraising and support for several Bay Area non-profit organizations and provides opportunities for lesser known artists to display and promote their work." Translation: We, on the other hand, are saintly people who live in a part of the country where we grow our own food and share it with the less fortunate while all holding hands. Also, our artists aren't 56, you mid-quinquagenarian, you.
4. "The Balloon Dog Bookends manufactured by imm Living and sold by Park Life are painted resin statues based on the classic art of twisting balloons into the shape of animals, commonly practiced by clowns, magicians, and street performers," the complaint states. On the other hand, "The Balloon Dog Sculpture that Koons claims to be infringed is a highly reflective metal reproduction, measuring over ten feet tall, based on a balloon twisted into shape to make a toy dog." So if you had, like, eyes, you could probably tell them apart. Burn.
5. And here's a fascinating fact provided by the plaintiff: "The art of twisting balloons into the shape of animals, or 'balloon modeling' long predates Koons' work. While the origin of balloon modeling is unknown, upon information and belief, balloon modeling has been traced back as far as 1939 when H.J. Bonnert of Scranton, Pennsylvania performed a balloon modeling act at the Pittsburgh Magicians' Convention." Obviously.
6. "Today, balloon modeling has grown to include a large body of followers, many of whom are members of the National Association of Balloon Artists and who attend the International Balloon Arts Convention." Koons has probably never even been to the International Balloon Arts Convention. Poser.
I think it's time for you to skip off to Belleview and commit yourself. Americans are crazy about litagation and wasting court time. Jeff take it from us; "The only ones who will benifit from this case are the Lawyers! If you don't understand this, It is time to shut up shop and close down your crafts studio. Unfortunately you will have to sack your army of MA Graduates who have been executing your unoriginal work for all of these years. Admit it, studio of Koons is nothing more than a money driven, art business run by a an ex-commodities broker. Haven’t we all had enough of your antics? Highlights of Koon's career included, large scaled nude selfportraits in various school boy fantasy tableaux's, with ex-wife/porn star, La Chicholina. Life size porcelain sculptures of Michael Jackson with Bubbles the chimp and sculptures of glamour models riding plastic inflatables. These works are disposable, degrading and not even clever enough to be ironic. Spare us!