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Biography of Jeff Koons

See works in the collection

b. 1955, York, Pennsylvania

1962
Begins to attend drawing classes, displaying his work at his father's furniture store.
1972
Enrolls at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, where he studies art and design.
1975
Moves to Chicago, where he continues his studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
1976
Moves to New York.
Forges a friendship with singer Patti Smith and members of the Talking Heads.
1977
Artists David Salle and Julian Schnabel introduce Koons to gallery owner Mary Boone, who takes an interest in his work.
Begins to work on sculptures that incorporate inflatable flowers and rabbits.
1980
Exhibits a work from the series The New, comprising a vacuum cleaner inside a vitrine, in the window of the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York.
1985
Begins the Equilibrium Tanks series, showing works from the series at his first solo exhibition in New York, at International with Monument, and at Feature Gallery in Chicago.
This series features the famous work Two Ball 50/50 Tank in which some basketballs are suspended in water inside vitrines.
1986
Works from Koons's metal sculptures Luxury and Degradation series are exhibited at International with Monument in New York and Daniel Weinberg Gallery in Los Angeles.
1987
Koon's work is included in New York Art Now at the Saatchi Collection in London.
Takes part in the Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.
1988
Works from Koons's Banality series in polychromed wood and porcelain, including the sculpture Michael Jackson and Bubbles , are exhibited at Ileana Sonnabend Gallery in New York, Donald Young Gallery in Chicago, and Galerie Max Hetzler in Cologne.
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago presents an exhibition of his work.
1989
Exhibits at the Rotterdamse Kunststichting in Rotterdam.
Displays, on an advertising billboard on Broadway in New York, the first image in the Made in Heaven series, in which the artist appears with porn star Ilona Staller (known as Cicciolina), his future wife.
1990
Participates in the XLIV Biennale di Venezia , where he shows works from his Made in Heaven series.
1991
Works from the Made in Heaven series are exhibited at Ileana Sonnabend Gallery in New York and Galerie Max Hetzler in Cologne.
Marries Ilona Staller in Budapest.
1992
The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam hold retrospective exhibitions of Koons's work.
Works from the Made in Heaven series are exhibited at Galerie Lehmann in Lausanne, Switzerland, and Christophe Van de Weghe in Brussels.
Creates Puppy, a 40-foot-high topiary sculpture in the form of a West Highland terrier, in Bad Arolsen, Germany.
1994
Exhibits at Anthony d'Offay Gallery in London.
1995
Puppy is exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney.
1997
Exhibits at Galerie Jérôme de Noirmont in Paris.
Puppy is permanently installed outside the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao on the occasion of the museum's inauguration.
1999
Exhibits at Ileana Sonnabend Gallery in New York and the Deste Foundation Centre for Contemporary Art in Athens.
2000
Creates the Easyfun-Ethereal series. Paintings from the series are exhibited at Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin. Installs the topiary sculpture Split-Rocker at the Palais des Papes in Avignon, France.
Puppy is temporarily installed at Rockefeller Center in New York.
Receives the BZ-Kulturpreis from the Berliner Zeitung in Berlin.
2001
Exhibits at the Kunsthaus Bregenz in Bregenz, Austria, and Gagosian Gallery in Los Angeles.
Works from the Easyfun-Ethereal series are exhibited at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and the following year at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York.
2002
The Kunsthaus Bielefeld in Bielefeld, Germany, organizes a show of Koons's photographs and graphic work. Participates in the XXV Bienal de São Paulo , where he shows works from the Easyfun-Ethereal series. Receives the Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture from the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine.
Receives an honorary doctorate of fine arts from the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C.
2003
Exhibits in an Italian museum for the first time, at the Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli in Naples. Koons's work is featured in From Jasper Johns to Jeff Koons: Four Decades of Art from the Broad Collections at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.
2004
Exhibits at Galerie Max Hetzler in Berlin.
2005
Elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
2006
Koons's work is shown alongside Antonio Canova's in the exhibition Canova and Koons: Classical Subversion at Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin.
2007
Named Officier de l'Ordre National de la Légion d'Honneur in Paris.
Participates in the Triennale di Milano, in the Atelier Bovisa.
Gagosian Gallery in London presents two exhibitions of the artist's work simultaneously: Jeff Koons: Popeye and Jeff Koons: Hulk Elvis.
Koons's work is featured in the group exhibition Guggenheim Collection: 1940s to Now at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne.
2008
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago presents an exhibition devoted to the artist's work. Three large-scale works are temporarily installed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York: Balloon Dog (Yellow) (1994–2000), Coloring Book (1997–2005), and Sacred Heart (Red/Gold) (1994–2007).
An exhibition of the artist's work is shown at the Château de Versailles in Versailles, France.
2009
Koons's work is featured in the show Four-4 at the Black Cube Gallery in Barcelona and in The Unexpected: Van Picasso tot Penck, van Appel tot Koons at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.
2010
Il est nommé membre de la Royal Academy of Arts, Londres. Il expose dans la Gagosian Gallery, New York, et dans la Galerie Jérôme de Noirmont, Paris. L'organisation à but non lucratif RxArt, en collaboration avec Kiehl's, installe l'œuvre de l'artiste dans l'Advocate Hope Children's Hospital, Oak Lawn, Illinois. Le « Art Car » de BMW créé par l'artiste court les 24 heures du Mans.
2011
L'organisation FEGS Health and Human Services System lui accorde le premier Voice of Art Award, et le Bruce Museum, Greenwich, Connecticut, lui décerne l'Artist Icon Award in the Arts. La Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Édimbourg, inaugure ARTIST ROOMS Jeff Koons.
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