Come on…this is so awesome! Super proud of our friend Kaws for getting this massive honor. He joins the legendary ranks of Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami and more…by being chosen to create an art-inspired giant balloon for this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!

Above is a photo of the Companion balloon on a test run, via the Wall Street Journal! Truthfully, Kaws could have made any one of his iconic figures into a balloon….the Michelin Man, the Spongebob…but the fact that a corpse-like shy fearful mickey-mouse-dressed figure with cauliflower ears will be floating down central park west in front of thousands of giddy tourists…is so subversive! I love it.

And now all I hope for is that Kaws makes like Murakami did in 2010….and joins the parade in a crazy outfit. (probably won’t happen…but imagine?!)

Check out photos of Murakami’s Kaikai and Kiki balloons, his flower-pot outfit…as well as other Thanksgiving Day Parade art balloons from Tom Otterness, and Jeff Koons…
After the jump

Brian Kaws Donnelly with Michelin Man figure at the Aldrich, 2010 (via HighSnobiety)
Kaws “Companion” 2012
Takashi Murakami, in costume, at the parade 2010
Takashi Murakami “Kaikai” “Kiki” 2010
Jeff Koons “Rabbit” 2007
Tom Otterness “Humpty Dumpty” 2005

More on Kaws and the “Companion” balloon (via WSJ):

“Companion has been a recurring character for me,” says Donnelly. In the past decade, it has been both a toy and a monumental sculpture. A 16-foot steel version went up in Hong Kong’s Harbour City in 2010 and, later, outside of New York’s Standard hotel. Painted gray, white and brown, the figure poses in a seated position, hunched slightly and covering its eyes. “I was thinking, God, if I had to sit there all day and have a million people pass me and stare, I’d be mortified,” says Donnelly. “That would be the worst experience ever. That’s where the pose came from.” A variation on that Companion will fly on Thanksgiving. “I think this is a first for the parade,” says Macy’s lead designer, John Piper, standing in a roomful of brightly colored clay prototypes at Macy’s 75,000-square-foot parade studio in New Jersey. “It’s the first time we’ve had a character that’s shy.”

Kaws, Todd James, Espo, Erik Parker and More at the 2012 Block Party, Hosted by Miss Info
Miss Info and Futura at the Paper Magazine 2012 Nightlife Awards
Lindsay Lohan x KAWS Cover Complex Magazine (Aug/Sept.10)
TONITE: Buy Great Art for a Great Cause! Join me at The Block Party 2010, Tribeca
Young Jeezy x Espo Cover Complex Magazine
Michael Jackson x Kaws for Interview Magazine
Art Auction Featuring Kaws, Todd James, More: Good for the Hood, Good for You Too : )
The Outsiders NYC show….Reas, Kaws, Choe, mo’