Google Taps Jeff Koons for “Live” Nexus Phone Case

The Jeff Koons-designed Nexus 5x "live case"

The Jeff Koons-designed Nexus 5x “live case”

Google has tapped Jeff Koons to create a custom ‘Live Case’ inspired by the artist’s iconic Gazing Ball series, marking the first partnership between the tech giant and a creative professional for an accessory.

The case is for Google’s smartphone, Nexus, and features one of three sculptures — Diana, Antinous, and an unnamed mailbox — from Gazing Ball, a series in which the artist paired classical statues and everyday objects with blue gazing balls (globe ornaments with highly reflective surfaces).

The case also activates a live wallpaper on the home screen of the phone. The wallpaper cycles through 33 choreographed scenes from the ballet Swan Lake, as danced by dancers from the New York City Ballet, Troy Schumacher and Ashley Laracey. The dance scenes change in response to on-screen actions from the user.

If that’s still not enough action for you, the case also periodically sends updates directly from Koons. The content, which Google says is not pre-designed, apparently will include spontaneous thoughts and photos.

The Live Case launches on May 10 for Nexus 6p and 5x and is priced at $40 each.

— Michelle Tay