The 2013 “Video Music Awards” to Brooklyn, New York for the first time ever. Airing LIVE from Barclays Center on Sunday, August 25, this year’s “Video Music Awards” will mark the 30th anniversary of the show and become the first major annual award show to take place in the borough of Brooklyn.
To help celebrate the milestone of this occasion MTV enlisted the help of internationally known artist Kaws to re-imagine the famous moon man VMA award for the first time in the show’s history. His creation can be seen in the 2013 VMA logo image above. Kaws commented on what it meant to him to redesign the famous trophy in a statement we’ve included below.
“Creative experimentation and reinvention are in MTV’s DNA. We have a history of partnering with groundbreaking artists – from Jean-Michel Basquiat to Andy Warhol – to bring inventive, thought-provoking works directly to our audience,” said Stephen Friedman, President of MTV. “KAWS is the perfect partner to continue this legacy, and his redesigned Moonman is the perfect centerpiece for music’s most irreverent award show.”
“I grew up watching MTV and the ‘Video Music Awards,’ so I was excited to interject my work into this world,” said KAWS. “It’s a true honor to be able to reimagine such an iconic symbol in music and pop culture, especially since the show is taking place in Brooklyn. I’m looking forward to seeing KAWS Moonman take over the 2013 ‘VMAs.’”
KAWS, who has also collaborated with musicians including Kanye West and Pharrell, kept the design true to the Moonman’s iconic image, while re-contextualizing it with his signature inflated skull and crossbones. The special-edition KAWS Moonman draws influence from KAWS’ COMPANION, and echoes the artist’s earlier works which have created a dialogue with iconic characters such as Mickey Mouse and The Simpsons. KAWS, who has been compared to Keith Haring and other pioneering contemporary visual artists, straddles the line between street and established art. His transformative works move seamlessly from art to commerce, as he injects sophisticated humor and playful intricacy that reflects on and sparks a conversation about the nature of contemporary culture.
MTV’s collaboration with KAWS builds on the network’s rich legacy of introducing its audience to vanguard art, including early work from Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Stephen Sprouse, Spike Jonze, Kenny Scharf and Doug Aitken, as well as Andy Warhol’s 15 Minutes. Additionally, glass sculptor Dale Chihuly’s work made an MTV “Video Music Awards” appearance in 2004, when one of his pieces was built into the show’s set. And, in 2012, MTV partnered with MoMA PS1 and Creative Time to revive Art Breaks, airing a series of ten original video art pieces by some of the most exciting emerging artists from around the world.