Dezeen Magazine

Banksy opens Gross Domestic Product online shop

Banksy opens online store selling riot helmets, CCTV baby mobiles and a stab-proof vest

Graffiti artist Banksy has set up an online shop selling products including riot helmets turned into disco balls and the stab-proof vest he designed for Stormzy.

Named Gross Domestic Product, the online shop officially opened on 17 October, just a few weeks after the artist announced the launch of his own merchandise line with a pop-up shop installation in Croydon, UK.

Banksy claimed that he was forced to release the branded merchandise following legal action from an unnamed greeting-card company that was trying to "seize legal custody" of his name.

Products on sale range from as little as £10 for an empty spray paint can to £850 for the Union Jack stab-proof vest that British rapper Stormzy wore during his headline set at this year's Glastonbury festival and a non-functional clutch bag made from a brick.

Banksy opens online store called Gross Domestic Product
Stormzy's stab-proof vest is being sold in the online store

A print made in homage to late American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, a rug designed to look like the corpse of Tony the tiger and a ceiling mounted baby mobile with rows of novelty CCTV cameras attached to it are also on sale.

The products each have tongue-in-cheek descriptions.  For example the baby mobile is designed to "prepare your little one for the journey ahead – a lifetime of constant scrutiny both state sanctioned and self imposed".

Banksy opens online store called Gross Domestic Product
Banksy is also selling Tony the tiger rugs

Purchases are limited to one item per person with buyers required to register their interest by completing and submitting a registration form on the website.

This requires them to answer a tie-breaker question of "Why does art matter?". Sales will be decided based on people's answers to the tie-breaker question.

Banksy opens Gross Domestic Product online shop
A baby mobile with rows of novelty CCTV cameras is also on sale

Through this system, applications are grouped by the item and time period they were submitted. According to the site, an independent third party will randomly select a time periods for each item and only evaluate applications received during the selected time period.

The tie-breaker submissions will be determined based on what the independent evaluator deems the "most apt and original", with the number of applications selected corresponding to the stock of relevant items available for purchase.

Other products on sale include a clock printed with the trademark Banksy rat, and a tombstone made from a 230kg slab of Portland stone for "the person who has everything".

Banksy opens Gross Domestic Product online shop
Non-functional clutch bags made from bricks are also on sale

The artist has also commercialised his well-known Girl with Balloon painting that was sent through a shredder at the moment of its auction sale last year, by making it into a tshirt with "fringing" as its bottom half.

Other clothing items on sale include t-shirts taken from charity shops that have been vandalised by the artist with his own name printed in stainer ink, spray paint or oil stick.

Successful applicants for the items will be notified by email within two weeks of submitting their answers, and will be sent a link to a private checkout to complete their online purchase, while any incomplete transactions will be offered to other shoppers.

Images by Tom Ravenscroft.