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5 Works of Art From Around the Globe that You Won’t Believe Actually Sold

  1. Yves Klein’s Anthropométries

Yves Klein has been described as “radical”–to say the least–though a feminist’s nightmare may be a more accurate a term. In the 1960s, the artist used nude female models as “human brushes” to make marks on canvases. The art was created in front of live audiences, hosted by Klein (who was decked out in a tuxedo and gloves, no less), and accompanied by classical music.

 

Performance
Photo by Shunk-Kender. Courtesy of Artists Rights Society (ARS), Roy Lichtenstein Foundation, Yves Klein Archives

Yves’ Anthropométries can sell for anywhere between one and twelve million dollars–which makes these paintings some of the creepiest works of art to ever hit the global art market.

Untitled Anthropometry (ANT 100)
Untitled Anthropometry (ANT 100) (1960). Courtesy of Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris.

 

  1. Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain

If you’ve ever taken an Art History class, there’s no doubt you’ve heard of Duchamp’s Fountain. Made in 1917, the work of art is just a urinal laid on its back with the artist’s pseudonym, R. Mutt, scribbled on the side–and guess what? It’s worth millions. In fact, one of the replicas of the original (that’s right, not even the original work of art) sold for a whopping $1.8 million in 1999. Bet you wish you’d been the first to think of calling a urinal on its side art, huh?

 

800px-Duchamp_Fountaine
The Fountain (1917)

 

  1. Lucio Fontana’s Attesse

This is literally a white canvas with a single slash mark in it, and it sold for £2,281,250 (3,693,560 US dollars). Just contemplate that for a minute. If you found something like this at a garage sale or in the back of your closet, you probably would have just thrown it in the garbage. But one man’s trash is another man’s treasure–$3 million worth of treasure, to be exact.

Concetto Spaziale, Attessa
Concetto Spaziale, Attessa (1964-1965). Courtesy of Soethby’s

 

  1. Anything from Miley Cyrus’s Dirty Hippie

Okay, so real talk here: I don’t know how much Miley Cyrus’s art is worth. In fact, I don’t even know if any of it has sold yet as her art show, Dirty Hippie, just opened September 10th. But let’s assume everything that this woman–who has a net worth between $120 million and $150 million –touches will sell and is worth buckets of money.

That being said, the young musician-turned-”sculptor”’s exhibition is essentially a physical collage of Anne Frank color schemes, friendship bracelets, drug paraphernalia, sex toys, excess stuff from Walmart’s $1 bin, and lots of glue.

Miley Cyrus's bong sculpture
Courtesy of V Magazine

Above is Cyrus’s 5 foot tall bong, which she described to 2 Chainz as, “my fans made all this sh*t so I just added it all together…all this sh*t lights up.

 

  1. Piero Manzoni’s Artist’s Shit

In the early 1960s, Piero Manzoni filled 90 tin cans with his feces and sold them to art collectors and museums. That’s right, you read that correctly, feces. These are literal tins of a human excrement. Now guess how much a single can sold for? Go on, guess. HINT: the answer will make you really, really mad.

Artist's Shit No. 014
Artist’s Shit No. 014 (1961). Courtesy of MoMA

In 2007, a Manzoni can sold for a whopping 124 thousand euros (around 156,443 US dollars). That’s enough money to buy a private island, but instead it was wasted on shitty art (pun intended).

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3 comments

  1. I loved everything about this article. It was hilarious, interesting, and the comical and conversational tone reminded me of a Cracked article. Awesome job!

  2. This was fantastic! You have a truly unique, well-developed voice. Also, Miley Cyrus’s “art” is about as sophisticated and complex as her music. Who knew? 😉

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