Formats
Anthologies
99
Audio
310
Catalogues
438
Clothing
23
Editions
30
Ephemera
68
Literary
38
Monographs
190
Posters
298
Video
39
Zines
144

Shop > Monographs

#15066

Jeff Koons: One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank

Artist
Jeff Koons
Writer
Michael Archer
Price
$25.95
Date
2011
Publisher
Afterall Books
Format
Monographs
ISBN
9781846380792
Size
15 × 21 × 1 cm
Length
120 pp
Genre
Contemporary Art, Criticism
Description

In Jeff Koons’s One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank (1985), a Spalding basketball floats in the center of a glass tank that stands on a four-legged black metal structure. It has been called one of the defining works of the 1980s—but also described (by such critics as Craig Owens, Rosalind Krauss, and Hal Foster) as “an endgame,” “misleading,” and “repulsive.” The work presents what the artist called “the ultimate state of being”—neither death nor life but the absence of change. It captured a spirit of the time, characterized by commodification, seduction, and political inactivity. Its stillness embodied the opposite of social revolution. But the “total equilibrium” of the work is actually temporary. For purely physical reasons, the equilibrium is lost every six months and must be reset.

In this extended essay on Koons’s famous work, Michael Archer puts One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank in an art historical framework, describing its initial exhibition at International With Monument in New York and related issues of media, commercialism, and class. He discusses the wider context of the 1980s art world, in which a renewed attention to painting practices met the legacy of Pop and appropriation art—setting the stage for the negative critical reception Koons’s artwork first received. Archer goes on to consider sport as celebrity-maker and industry; the physical science of equilibrium; and the implications of the fact that the equilibrium of One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank is indeed total—but temporary.

  1. Jeff Koons: One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank
 

Related Items

  1. Rodney Graham and  Shepherd Steiner: Rodney Graham: Phonokinetoscope
  2. Marc Camille Chaimowicz and Tom Holert: Marc Camille Chaimowicz: Celebration? Realife
  3. Jacques Herzog, Philip Ursprung, and Jeff Wall: Pictures of Architecture
  4. Elizabeth Legge and Michael Snow: Michael Snow: Wavelength
  5. Jeff Wall
  6. Dan Adler and Hanne Darboven: Hanne Darboven: Cultural History 1880-1983 (softcover)
  7. Dara Birnbaum and T.J. Demos: Dara Birnbaum: Technology/Transformation: Wonder Woman
  8. Craig Burnett and Philip Guston: Philip Guston: The Studio
  9. Sonja Ivekovic and Ruth Noack: Sanja Ivekovic: Triangle
  10. Walker Evans and Oliver Richon: Walker Evans: Kitchen Corner
  11. Bas Jan Ader and Jan Verwoert: Bas Jan Ader: In Search of the Miraculous
  12. Kodwo Eshun and Dan Graham: Dan Graham: Rock My Religion
  13. Sarah Lucas and Amna Malik: Sarah Lucas: Au Naturel
  14. Sharon Lockhart and Howard Singerman: Sharon Lockhart: Pine Flat
  15. Mark Leckey and Mitch Speed: Mark Leckey: Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore
  16. Patricia Lee and Sturtevant: Sturtevant: Warhol Marilyn
  17. Pierre Huyghe and Mark Lewis: Pierre Huyghe: Untitled (Human Mask)
  18. Peter Fischli, Jeremy Millar, and David Weiss: Fischli and Weiss: The Way Things Go
  19. Hollis Frampton and Rachel Moore: Hollis Frampton: (nostalgia)
  20. Stefan Gronert and Sigmar Polke: Sigmar Polke: Girlfriends
  21. Helen Chadwick and Marina Warner: Helen Chadwick: The Oval Court
  22. Juliane Bischoff and Kate Newby: I can’t nail the days down
  23. Anna Dezeuze and Thomas Hirschhorn: Thomas Hirschhorn: Deleuze Monument
  24. Suzanne Hudson and Agnes Martin: Agnes Martin: Night Sea
  25. Sarah Cook: Information
  26. Gwen Allen: The Magazine
  27. Claire Bishop: Participation
  28. Boris Groys: Logic of the Collection
  29. Michael Dopp: New Babylon
  30. Michael Newman and Richard Prince: Richard Prince: Untitled (couple)
  31. Piotr Uklański: Ottomania
  32. Sophie Richard: Unconcealed: The International Network of Conceptual Artists 1967-1977
  33. Osmos Magazine: Issue 06
  34. Mark Lanctôt and François LeTourneux: La machine qui enseignait des airs aux oiseaux
  35. Postport
  36. Making Art Global, Part 1

The Third Havana Biennial 1989
  37. Robin Cameron: Who You, I See
  38. Stephen Andrews: Forecast
  39. Justin Gordon and Justin Patterson: A Call With No Response
  40. Prism of Reality Issue #3