Banksy launches online shop, Gross Domestic Product
The new Banksy online shop Gross Domestic Product will control the resale of his artworks, but this is no ordinary store
Aside from the unusual marketing strategy, there is a further twist to Banksy's new enterprise. Those wishing to register for items, all of which are on sale for below the market value, will have to answer the question '
Bbay, 'your first choice destination to trade in secondhand work by a third-rate artist.'
However, buying a bona fide Banksy at a cut price is sure to be a tempting proposition for those hoping to sell on their purchases for a profit. Earlier this month Banksy's Devolved Parliament, a painting representing politicians in the House of Commons as chimps, sold for £9.9 million at Sotheby's. And it's unclear how resale will be policed.
Prices on the website range from £10 for a signed mug to £850 for the 'John Bull' stab vest worn by Stormzy at Glastonbury, and sales are limited to one item per person. You can also buy a Bansky welcome mat for £500. The mats have been stitched using abandoned life vests found on the beaches of the Mediterranean. The proceeds from this product will go to the charity, Love Welcomes, which supports female refugees in detainment camps in Greece.
Gross Domestic Product is Banksy's reaction to a legal dispute with a card company who wanted to use his images on their wares. By selling works that come with his stamp of approval (he is not represented by a gallery) he is hoping to circumvent those hoping to make a quick buck from his work. It is a sort of trademarking exercise for an artist who has always said that 'copyright is for losers'. The website also advertises a future 'dealership' called Bbay, which promises to be 'your first choice destination to trade in secondhand work by a third-rate artist.' Who knows if Bbay will materialise, or whether it is another joke, but it does seem that Banksy has decided to take the commodification of his work seriously.
Click here to register for your Banksy artwork.