Today’s modern art piece is called “Balloon Dog” by Jeff Koons.

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It is an enormous balloon dog made of steel and I saw it on display with many other of Koons’ works in the King’s Apartments at the Palace of Versailles, France. The contrast between the rich baroque interiors and the kitsch modern art is meant to be playful or jarring, depending on your view. In fact, the interiors of Versailles are pretty kitsch too. I love the idea of transforming something so simple and transient as a balloon animal, with all its connotations of childhood, fun, and celebration, into a permanent colossal form.

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Apparently there were protests from French purists who didn’t want Koons to exhibit at Versailles. I think Marie Antoinette would have liked it. Though that’s probably the problem!

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