Filming with the Jeff Koons Collective

Jeff Koons Collective logoSome of you may have recently read about the Jeff Koons Collective, a group of young people who are working with Brighton Museum & Art Gallery on the upcoming Jeff Koons’ exhibition, creating merchandise in response to his work and overall promoting the exhibit too. You can find out more about the Jeff Koons Collective by reading this blog post written by Charlie, one of the Collective’s members.

As the Museum’s Digital Media Apprentice, I was given the opportunity to produce an evaluation video for the project, detailing the story of the Collective from its early beginnings to to the end. It was an exciting opportunity for me – gaining some filming and editorial experience may come in handy for me in the future – so I jumped at the chance.

At first a lot of the people they were meeting, and the things they were doing didn’t make a lot sense to me but I decided to research Jeff Koons a little and chatted with the Collective. The dots began connecting and I understood exactly what the Collective stood for. It’s designed to engage people in art, specifically young people.

Recently, the Collective met up with the museum’s Programme Manager, Helen Grundy. There’s been a lot of stress, trial and error and persuading been involved to get the works displayed at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery. Koons’ work is quite something, it’s not as simple as moving flat fine art paintings around. Koons’ work is complicated and much of it is huge. The Collective were really interested in how the exhibition was coming along, and many of them were shocked at how much the exhibition has been planned, then only to have the plan scrapped and replanned again and again. They were, however, extremely excited that the Jeff Koons exhibition is nearly upon us. It was also great taking the group into the exhibition hall (where the Biba exhibition recently stood) so they could get a sense of where the pieces would go. It was also a key point I wanted to film, I think filming the process of the actual room is very important and most definitely adds to the storytelling element.

The Collective themselves are great people, all of them are incredibly focused and committed to the project and you get a real sense of compassion when you speak to them. They are very much involved and very open, so open in fact that I’ve actually sort of integrated myself into the Collective. It wasn’t on purpose; but the more time you spend with the group the more you feel like you’re part of the team.

For now, they’re in the midst of the project. There’s a lot of planning and discussion going on due to the upcoming events. I can’t say much as I wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise. It’s all very exciting!

Personally, I’m slowly beginning to build up my footage so I can start editing and creating the video very soon. I’ve already got the plans sorted for the video, and I hope that it reflects not only the project but also the experience for the young people.

It’s been incredibly fun bringing along a camera and a microphone, and whilst the group where a little hesitant at first, it hasn’t taken them very long to just ignore the camera completely. I’m hoping to film some crucial pieces in our next meeting so I can finally begin editing all the pieces together.

The Jeff Koons Exhibition opens on May 11.

Emily Vernon, Digital Media Apprentice

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