Jeff Koons' Balloon Dog (orange) sold last night for a living artist record $58,450,000. A former commodity trading wiz, Koons rarely leaves his viewers without opinion. Balloon Dog is one of a set of 5 different colored 15 foot sculptures of the every child's favorite clown/magician/uncle's surprise gift. A classic Koons theme in jaw dropping technical delivery. Insider trading crook Steven A. Cohen owns one.
The work, its price and one of its owners is a metaphor for the QE world we live in. The cult of celebrity and the lack of gravitas blur with the significant. Like Twitter, like America, Balloon Dog is at once totally vapid and totally awesome. Most importantly, its price is going up; therefore, it is good. The art market and its bubbiliciousness is often held out as a signal of the excess and hubris stage of the cycle. I don't see it turning, yet.