Exit through the gift shop

The one thing I’ve hated most about the consumer culture is the fact that good or bad isn’t judged by the quality of the product or the features, but it’s more affected by who owns it, whose wearing it and how high is it priced. That is not limited to products sold in commercials, made in factories or in designer houses. The same is very true for art, sadly.

An artists with a good PR team will gain more fame and acquire more money then an amazing artsist working on his own. All of this is portrait such brilliantly in ‘Exit through the gift shop’ . Thierry Guetta is well nothing at all, he doesn’t even make his own work, the one that he does make is a blend of already done street art with big paint splatters that he put in. The ‘art’ does not necessarily convey a message, unlike Banskey or fairy. It all just might be a social experiment by Bansky but well it worked. With a huge PR campaign, endorsements from Bansky, the LA weekly and Fairy. Shit sold out, to say the least. The exhibition went on for two months, selling most of the ‘pieces’ and earning Thierry Guetta over a million dollars.

The whole phenomenon is well brilliantly put by Steve Lazarides “I think the joke is on… I don’t know who the joke’s on – really. I don’t even know if there is a joke.”  

Thierry Guetta set out to make some money by selling overpriced modern street art and well he succeeded, of course everyone in the street art business is not going to be pleased by it. A random guy just came out of the blue and made more money in two months then they could ever imagine and that too by selling work that has been there for ages.

Well, one should never underestimate the stupidity of people in large groups, if you are in the business to make money well there is nothing wrong with making a quick buck earned on by other peoples stupidity. If you’re in it for the works well you need to stop thinking about who buys your work and for how much, the process of creating art should be full filling for you. If it isn’t well you really should find a side job or well go Thierry Guetta on the public and stop thinking about if it’s ‘art’ you’re creating and feed that stomach.

Overall it’s such an amazing thing to watch, personally I do hope it’s all a hoax created by bansky. It would just take it to a whole new level.


Published by

Fahim Akhter

Fahim is a product manager with over 10 years of experience currently working as product head at MONT5. He focuses on user centric centric design, especially on brand, user experience and revenue product challenges. Prior to joining MONT5, Fahim's has worn multiple hats during his career from game production to product development but the emphasis has always been on creating unparalleled user experience and to help startups to make complex products more engaging. He has worked on diversified portfolio of startups including games, apps, education and e-commerce with product reach of 10M users across the globe. Fahim is a computer science graduate from FAST Islamabad. He volunteers for education and mentors students and startups, to help them grow and drive innovation.

2 thoughts on “Exit through the gift shop”

  1. I LOVED that film; I thought it was captivating and fantastically well done. It made me want to become a street artist, but I have too much of a fear of getting in trouble. It was inspiring and disheartening at the same time. As a struggle artist watching a guy just randomly want to be a famous artist and get it–with a team of (seemingly?) underappreciated and unacknowledged artists and designers working under him, whose work–is considered his, made me feel sad.

    1. Just had a look at your work and well holy guakamoli, you should really consider getting into street art, I would love to see your work on murals on walls. That’s be pretty neat. And well if you’re afraid you should find yourself a Thierry.

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