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Anonymous graffiti artist Banksy opens new online shop


Agence France-Presse

 /  Sat, October 19, 2019  /  08:07 pm
Anonymous graffiti artist Banksy opens new online shop

In this file photo taken on June 25, 2018, a man walks past an artwork by street artist Banksy in Paris on a side street to the Bataclan concert hall where a terrorist attack killed 90 people on Nov. 13, 2015. (AFP/Thomas Samson)

Just weeks after the record-breaking sale of his "Devolved Parliament," Banksy is bringing his anti-capitalist and anti-authoritarian art online.

The elusive British artist announced the online store for Gross Domestic Product on Instagram, stating that it will encompass a diverse selection of "art, homeware and disappointment."

Among the selection are mugs, cushions, purses, a disco ball police helmet and clocks with the artist's signature rat motif, which were all on view earlier this week at Banksy's pop-up showroom in Croydon, UK.

Also on sale is a "Girl With Red Balloon" t-shirt whose bottom half is shredded into cloth tendrils, as a nod to the prank the street artist pulled last October at Sotheby's London.

Read also: Banksy in Venice? New work appears and perhaps the artist himself

Indeed, "Girl With Red Balloon" began to pass through a shredder hidden in its frame a few seconds after it went under the hammer for £1.04 million.


. "The urge to destroy is also a creative urge" - Picasso

A post shared by Banksy (@banksy) on

Another highlight of Gross Domestic Product is a "John Bull" stab-proof vest "as worn by Stormzy at Glastonbury festival (because it's very dangerous there)," which is currently listed at £850.

The range of items go from £10 to £850, with Banksy claiming to have "price fixed the first releases for lower income patrons."

The anonymous street artist added that wealthy art collectors are discouraged to purchase any of the pieces from the store, as they are "far below market value."

Prospective shoppers also have to go through an application process to buy any item from Gross Domestic Product, which includes answering the question "Why does art matter?" in 50 words or less.

Responses, which must be logged by October 28, will be judged by British comedian Adam Bloom, who urges potential buyers to make their answer as "amusing, informative or enlightening as possible."

"We can't ever weed out all the people who just want to flip for profit, but we can weed out the unfunny ones," Banksy explained in a statement.

As Art Newspaper pointed out, the launch of the store was motivated by a dispute over Banksy's trademark with greeting card company Full Colour Black.

"A greetings card company is contesting the trademark I hold to my art. And attempting to take custody of my name so they can sell their fake Banksy merchandise legally," the artist said in a statement.

However, Banksy clarified on his new website that he still "continues to encourage the copying, borrowing and uncredited use of his imagery for amusement, activism and education purposes."

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