Jeff Koons' Balloon Dog, a pop icon, to auction for $55m with Christie's

Jeff Koons' famed 12-foot high Balloon Dog (Orange) sculpture will auction through Christie's on November 12, as one of the highest valued lots in its Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale in New York.

Jeff Koons Balloon Dog Christie's
The instantly-recognisable Balloon Dog is the definitive symbol of Koons' career

Described as "one of the most recognisable images in today's canon of art history" by the auction house, the monumental steel work will be offered with an estimate of $35-55m, a price that will set a new auction record for Koons' work, which stands at $33.6m.

Proceeds from the sale will benefit The Brant Foundation Art Study Centre.

"At a time when collectors are propelling rare master works to new price levels at auction, the sale of Jeff Koons' Balloon Dog will be a spectacular event for buyers around the world. This is a definitive icon of the 20th century," commented Brett Gorvy, Christie's chairman and international head of post-war and contemporary art.

"To own this work immediately positions the buyer alongside the very top collectors in the world and transforms a collection to an unparalleled level of greatness."

The 1990s work is considered the finest example from Koons' acclaimed Celebration series, which first propelled the artist to his current prominence when Balloon Flower (Magenta) set a record for any living artist at Christie's in 2008.

Koons looks set to retake the title of most valuable living artist with the sale, after Gerhard Richter maintained his bragging rights with a $37.1m result in May.

Balloon Dog (Orange) was one of the first of many Balloon Dogs by Koons. It was acquired by collector Peter Brant in the late 1990s, adding to his renowned collection that contains some of the foremost works by Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat in private hands, and has influenced the markets for their work for decades.

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