That Makes Pop Puppy Sad: Company That Produced Koons’ Balloon Dogs Closing Shop

04/28/2010 12:52 PM |

Jeff Koons Balloon Dog

Even being the builders behind one of the most successful living artists’ most iconic works wasn’t enough: San Francisco-based high-end art manufacturing company Carlson & Co. is closing after 39 years of helping ambitious artists give material form to their visions. Bloomberg reports that despite a rise in business during the art market boom between 2002 and 2008, the company has been hit hard by the collapse of the market’s high end. In addition to Jeff Koons’ Balloon Dogs (most recently seen atop the Met last summer, at right) and several other of his works, browsing Carlson & Co.’s projects archive is like looking at a “Who’s Who” of contemporary art stars.

Abel Abdessemed, Doug Aitken, Rodney Graham, Ellsworth Kelly, Terence Koh, John McCracken, Claes Oldenburg, Ken Price, Robert Therrein and many more have gone to founder Peter Carlson and his company of 90-something workers (all fired last week) to execute complex pieces of art. Sad news, and a reminder that just because galleries are expanding doesn’t mean the art market recession is over. (LindsayPollock)