First, I missed out on buying a balloon dog edition from the New Museum gift shop a dozen years ago. It was $500 then and now sells for $5000+ – if you can find one. Target sold a plastic balloon dog lamp, which I missed the boat on as well, and then I didn’t hop on H&M’s recent authorized Koon’s balloon dog purse ($49.95) bandwagon fast enough and now THEY are sold-out. (They’re already resurfacing on eBay.) Coulda, shoulda, woulda, Prada. But now a Chinese company called VLA Sculpture (Vincent Landscape Architect?) is supposedly selling stainless steel and resin balloon dog sculptures on Alibaba, a massive Chinese e-commerce site. There are various actual Koons Balloon Dog sculptures, the most famous being the orange one, which set a record at auction for a living artist. $58.4 million. (The orange was always my fave, anyway.) The VLA list offers eight options of pricing based on material and dimensions. The largest size offered are $5,850 for stainless steel, but just $2,925 for resin. I emailed the company rep, Rebecca, to find out if they are still offering these, but so far, no response. I’ll update this post, if and when I get an answer.) If you don’t have an extra $6K sitting around, artist Rob Myers has offered another solution. He’s posted files to 3-D print your own balloon dog to Thingiverse which is connected to the Makerbot 3-D printing site.Arnet reached out to the Koons Studio to ask if the artist plans to take any legal action but they have not received any response to date. (Come to think of it, maybe this is why Rebecca hasn’t gotten back to me…?)
NOTE: So, I JUST got a reply from Rebecca. It looks like the deal is on. "Yes, we produce stainless steel balloon dog, but may I have your usage of the statue? In your website, there are so many artworks. I wonder is this dog for your showroom? Sorry that we don't sell for showing. As you know this dog is Jeff Koons', he's very famous now, if for personal Enjoyment, it's ok." She was referring to my own paintings on my website, I think, and yes, it's for my own "personal enjoyment".