Jeff Koons harshly treated by his then wife Ilona Staller (Cicciolina) – June 1994.

Ilona: “I am in Trieste, but I don’t feel safe. Minister Biondi needs to help me. My husband is going to kill me. He keeps threatening me.”

Jeff Koons and La Cicciolina - Made in Heaven

Jeff Koons and Cicciolina (Ilona Staller) – Made in Heaven

Staller is on the run with her child.

Staller has left Genoa for Trieste. She doesn’t seem agitated at all. On the phone, her voice sounds quite calm. She is with her son, Ludwig, whom she “kidnapped” last week in New York where the child was living with his father, sculptor Jeff Koons. Yesterday, Staller took to the microphones of “Teleroma 56” to appeal to Justice Minister Biondi, juvenile court judges in Italy, and the Parliament, “until the Italian laws that protect Italian citizens like my son are made to be respected.”

La Cicciolina (Ilona Staller) with Ludwig

Cicciolina (Ilona Staller) with Ludwig

Ilona, what is happening?

“Believe me, the situation I’m in is not easy. My husband in the United States is a powerful man because he has a lot of money, and in the United States – more so than in Italy – you can buy anything.”

Helmut Newton © The Helmut Newton Estate and Maconochie Photography

Jeff Koons and Cicciolina (Ilona Staller) by Helmut Newton © The Helmut Newton Estate & Maconochie Photography

Are you in Italy now?

“Yes. But he has hired important lawyers in Italy as well. He wants the child right away. This is why he threatened me again yesterday on the telephone, telling me, “You will see!” These words frighten me, knowing the type of man he is.”

Where are you at the moment?

“Near Trieste. Actually, in Trieste. I was in Genoa before, but it’s not true that I was staying in the home of a porn star. Maybe someone is trying to get publicity by saying that. Today my friends are only lawyers. I no longer have time to see anyone. I no longer have a life until this matter is resolved. As I told you, my husband is a powerful man, and he’s not playing around here in Italy either.”


Made in Heaven

Who gives you money to pay your lawyers?

“Hold on. My son went poo. I have to change his nappy.”

OK, but who gives you money?

“I still have an account open in the Parliament bank. I am going through my assets. My husband no longer gives me a dime. So I have to pay with my own money. It’s true that I eat like a bird, but everything is so expensive in New York. I have to take taxis and get around the city.”

How are you living now?

“Like a fugitive.”

What about the child?

“He’s Italian-American, and therefore he’s protected in Italy. My husband hates Italy, and hates that my son is here.”

La Cicciolina (aka Ilona Staller) with husband at the time Jeff Koons and son Ludwig. Photo: WENN/Cardone Luigino

Cicciolina (aka Ilona Staller) with husband at the time Jeff Koons and son Ludwig. Photo: WENN/Cardone Luigino

Do you hate your husband?

“No. I don’t hate him, but he’s threatening me. I thought he was an intelligent person considering that he is educated and is cultured. But obviously culture isn’t enough. He is an impossible man.”

Is it true that he did sexually obscene things to you?

“No. We did fight in the bedroom, but over stupid things. He wanted things that were sexually absurd. I certainly don’t have any hang-ups in that sense. I would have done anything. But I told the psychologist in New York that I suspected my husband was a psychopath. I walked in on him nude on the bed while our child was playing with his genitals, and I told him, “It’s not nice to do that with a child.” I certainly saw other horrible things, but I can’t tell you about them. In other words, my husband is mad as a hatter.”


What does he want from you?

“Our child, but as a way of showing how powerful he is and not because he really cares about him. It’s that he can’t stand to lose.”

Is he jealous? Does he still love you?

“No. I don’t know. He wants the child to keep him away from his mother. But the child should stay with both of us, and he only wants him for him.”

La Cicciolina (aka Ilona Staller) with husband at the time Jeff Koons and son Ludwig. Photo: WENN/ Cardone Luigino

Cicciolina (aka Ilona Staller) with husband at the time Jeff Koons and son Ludwig. Photo: WENN/ Cardone Luigino

In the meantime, you aren’t working at all anymore?

“No. What do you expect me to do while I’m here on the run? And I want it to be clear that I am no longer a porn star. My porn star friends haven’t helped me. They have only said that to get publicity. I would like to do television interviews and shows. I have a sparkling wit and am very funny when I want to be.”


When do you think this situation with you, your husband, and your child will end?

“Soon, I hope. It’s time for it to end, but first and foremost, I hope that my husband doesn’t want to kill me, because he’s a psychopath and capable of anything!”


16th June 1994