The $59,000 Gift Shop Item

For those who cannot stretch to the £36,800 skull, there is a set of 12 china plates for £10,500, a spotted skateboard for £480, a deckchair for £310 and a butterfly-print umbrella for £195. Butterfly-print wallpaper costs £700 a roll.

Damien Hirst currently has a retrospective of his work at the Tate museum in Britain, and is selling 50 painted skulls in the gift shop for about $59,000 a pop. I do admire Hirst’s audacity to put an arbitrarily high price tag on a gift shop item. He points out that people are willing to pay ridiculous amounts of money for designer jeans, so it’s not so different than that. Which, true! A hedge fund manager spent $8 million for a Hirst piece entitled, “The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living.” It was a tiger shark suspended in a tank filled with formaldehyde. Modern art! [via]

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