PRINT March 2003

’80s THEN

Jeff Koons

KATY SIEGEL: Let’s begin with your move to New York from Chicago. What year did you come here?

JEFF KOONS: I originally hitchhiked here at the end of ’76, but I didn’t officially move to New York until January ’77. In Chicago I went to the School of the Art Institute, and I enjoyed it because I was studying with people whose work and passion I really respected, like Ed Paschke and Jim Nutt. But I lost interest in my own work, which had been in kind of a personal iconography, and I realized that different things were happening in New York—different communities, the New Wave music scene. And that’s what really pulled me here.

KS: Were you part of the New Wave scene?

JK: I had a friend from Chicago who knew people like the Talking Heads, and I liked them and Patti Smith and the New York Dolls and Jonathan Richman. I wasn’t directly connected with them artistically, but I appreciated their sense

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