Jeff Koons's Diamond (Red)

“I'm interested in people, human desire, and aspiration, having daily interconnection with the people I value. I believe in experience, and having transcendence in your life.„

— Jeff Koons

Jeff Koon's latest edition is possibly the most festive and staggeringly beautiful artwork from his Celebration series. The American artist has once again challenged the technical means, with the meticulousness of his latest project, as well as stretched the capabilities of porcelain practice throughout the 52 sharp cuts of the diamond.

Titled Diamond (Red), Jeff Koons reveals a reimagined iconography of a diamond, he revisits the form of nature´s creation that takes billions of years to form. As always, his works capture perfection not a glimpse or fragment of reality, but of the ideal, of a world of obtained dreams and perfection - the Diamond (Red) has a deliberate visual language that introduces us to a synthetic man-made creation. 


Diamond (Red), 2020

Greeks believed that diamonds were the tears of gods, and Plato suggested that they were living celestial spirits embodied in stones, further adding to the mystique and power that surrounded the stone. In Roman literature, dated from the first century AD, Cupid's arrows were diamond-tipped. This visual language references today´s narration of love, procreation and commercially indicated in the minimal geometric forms and/or cuts of a diamond ring. The diamond is viewed as a classic symbol of love that represents light, permanence, and sincerity, it has been rooted in history and in the human DNA.

Similarly to the original and monumental sculpture of Diamond, 1994-2005 (measuring seven feet wide and in five unique colour version of Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, and Pink), the limited fine-art edition shares a highly polished chromium surface that reflects light, but does not refract it in the same way as a real diamond, where light travels through the precious gemstone's 52 cuts. Characteristic of Koons's artworks, they share a deliberate mirroring effect of its environment, the surrounding and that of the viewer(s) - one cannot see the artwork without seeing oneself.

The Diamond (Red) is presented in the company of four gleaming golden settings at its corners, embracing the gemstone from every angle to keep it safe and in place. The narration of a diamond placed in a contemporary context is viewed as a cliché gesture showcasing love and commitment, also socially considered as a symbol of affluence. Commercial red diamonds are commonly known as the most expensive and the rarest diamond colour in the world. It's so rare in fact, that it is thought that only 30 true gem-quality red diamonds are known to exist.

“This limited edition allows more access to my work versus it sitting in a museum or a collector’s home. It’s the engagement I love.„

— Jeff Koons

Koon's limited edition of the Diamond (Red) is composed of valuable Limoges porcelain. Its materiality echoes the subject of life and creation, through its use of clay (being the main ingredient of porcelain). With the medium of porcelain Koons makes yet once again a reference to the "creation of life from clay", the miraculous birth theme present in Christianity, mythology, and abundantly found in literature.