Banksy recently displayed a lot of artworks under the name Gross Domestic Product in an empty shop in London, Croydon. The artworks have now been removed and can be purchased online in Banksy's eponymous online shop. On the webshop, you will find limited-edition artworks with nods to his most famous works.
The Banksy Clutch bag is a brick with leather handles, finished with a gold-coloured lock that leads nowhere, for £ 750. Banksy describes the bag as the perfect accessory for someone who doesn't have a lot to carry but might have to hit someone else in the face. The t-shirt with the famous girl with a balloon costs only £ 30. The armor vest, designed for rapper Stormzy for Glastonbury festival to fight knife violence in London, can also be purchased online for £ 850.
However, the process is not that simple. Those who are browsing through the online shop will quickly notice that the prices are suspiciously low, compared to the excessive amounts for which Banky's works are sold at auctions.
Very little is known about the street art artist Banksy, but we are aware of his sense of humour. He claims that the prices have been set lower so more people can access his works. However, before you take your credit card out of your handbag, you have to pass an important test.
If you can come up with an answer to the question 'Why Does Art Matter?' in less than 50 words, you might be allowed to buy something from the webshop. A so-called impartial judge, Adam Bloom (who is also a stand-up comedian), will decide on the basis of your answer whether you can proceed to purchase. If it may be a consolation, increase your chance of success with a portion of humor, rather than a hefty capital.
Art collectors have been warned with a message on the website: "Rich art collectors are requested at all times not to shop." Find more information here.