Jeffrey "Jeff" Koons (born January 21, 1955) is an American artist known for his reproductions of banal objects—such as balloon animals produced in stainless steel with mirror finish surfaces.
Koons' work has sold for substantial sums of money including at least one world record auction price for a work by a living artist. Critics are sharply divided in their views of Koons. Some view his work as pioneering and of major art-historical importance. Others dismiss his work as kitsch: crass and based on cynical self-merchandising. Koons has stated that there are no hidden meanings in his works.
Koons was born in York, Pennsylvania. As a child he went door to door after school selling gift-wrapping paper and candy to earn pocket-money. As a teenager he revered Salvador Dalí, to the extent that he visited him at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City. Koons studied painting at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Maryland Institute College of Art. After college, he worked as a Wall Street commodities broker while establishing himself as an artist. He gained recognition in the 1980s and subsequently set up a factory-like studio in a SoHo loft on the corner of Houston and