Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst, two of the most expensive artists living today, joined forces for an exhibition of Koons' work at Hirst's Newport Street Gallery in London. Titled "Now," the exhibition displays over 30 pieces of art by the American artist, all of which were borrowed from Hirst's personal collection. Critics are all in a tizzy over the event.
We sent our cultural editor from "U-R-FKD" Magazine along to see the exhibition and interview the two celebrants.
The show runs the spectrum of Koons' output and begins with his Warhol rip-off homage to consumerism, two Hoover vacuums aglow in fluorescent cases. Also to be found are large balloon sculptures, Play-Doh mounds, and porno prints from the "Made in Heaven" or "I-got-to-shag-the-hot-Italian Porn Star-without-degrading-myself" series.
An "ideas man," Koons uses computer-aided design and hires out his 'concepts' to technicians who can actually make what he cannot. But, that is capitalism for you... and that is what these two 'great' men celebrate. As Damien Hirst says..."You have to respect money." While it still has value, of course. Those who are charting the imminent extinction of the American dollar may take a different view.
Q: Well Jeff, you sold a piece recently for fifty nine million dollars. Do you think it was worth it?
K: It had a veneer finish.
Q: But fifty nine million? You could build three hospitals for that!
K: I packed it myself. Postage these days... you have no idea.
Q: Damien Hirst. Do you think it was worth it?
H: My Diamond Skull sold for fifty million quid.
K: I'm jealous (laughing).
Q: And what do you say Damien to the people who say you got the idea from a similar skull covered in tesserae that you spotted in a street market in Peru? Or that you ripped off John Lekay's crystal skull of 1993? Or that it didn't matter a damn what you came up with, however absurd it may have been, because the Brit establishment were then and are now promoting you from top to bottom just as they did with your anima "Rowling". There is more dirt dished on Pope Francis than there is on Rowling... and nothing whatever on you.
H: Fuck you! My skull has eight thousand six hundred and one diamonds on it. Moreover, it's an English skull. I called it "Yorick". And not even the critics knew that! They thought it was just an ordinary skull.
Q: Jeff, your flagrantly erotic, some might say pornographic images of your ex-wife Cicciolina, people might find offensive.
H: You had to have been there.
Q: Many were.
K: Ouch! That's what I love about you Brits... such a wacky sense of humour. One of your chief exports.
Q: Can you name any other of our chief exports Damien?
D: Harry Potter.
Q: Rumour has it that Potter is a complete rip-off from a Northern Irish writer. In fact it is doubtful that you Brits have ANYTHING of value that you have not stolen from somebody else.
Q: Can either of you name any other great British exports?
H: Can you?
Q: Let me think... Racism, evolutionism, mind control, bureaucratic con-artistry, the so-called 'Enlightenment', logical positivism, diplomacy, the share market, media manipulation, snobbery, The Turner Prize... I could think of others. What about Freemasonry?
D: What about it?
K: I have to go. I have an urgent colonic irrigation at three. (Exit Koons stage left.).
Q: You are a Freemason Mister Hirst are you not?
H: How do you know?
Q: You have a diamond encrusted Masonic signet ring on your index finger.
H: Ah... but the question is... is the ring on the finger... or is the finger in the ring?
H: Did the Masons make you their art pin-up boy for the sake of keeping the prices up for British art abroad or....?
Q: I'm sorry... I have to go and video Jeff's colonic irrigation for his next pooh series. (Exit Hirst stage right.)