Marc Jacobs turns graffiti into $680 t-shirt

Marc Jacobs's SoHo boutique was graffitied by Kidult, who painted ART in giant pink letters across the storefront. Jacobs had the graffiti photographed, removed, and printed on a t-shirt, which he offered for sale for $689, or "Signed by the artist, $680."

Earlier this week, on the night of the Met Ball, the Marc Jacobs boutique in SoHo was hit by French graffiti artist Kidult, who has famously vandalized Supreme, Hermes, and Louis Vuitton, among others. The hit? Kidult took a fire extinguisher filled with pink paint, and sprayed the word ART over the front of the store (seen above).

As a crew cleaned it up the next morning and Kidult took to Twitter to brag, Marc Jacobs and his canny reps turned the stunt on its head, capitalizing on the graffiti artist’s own work to the benefit of their own marketing: By Tweeting it out as “Art by Art Jacobs” and Instagramming an ‘artsy’ picture of it. Kidult, clearly on the scene, tried to make his presence known, but it was too late: Jacobs had won that one.

Update: Aaand now Wilfry is selling a $35 "meta-tee." (Thanks, Emily!)

Marc Jacobs vs. The Graffiti Artist, Round 2: When Jacobs Turns Vandalized Store Into $680 Shirt (via Kottke)


  1. Fire extinguisher graffiti always sucks.   There was some jerk who tagged a building on Van Brunt St. in Brooklyn with a sprayer, and it just looked awful.  It felt so oppressive to have to pass by it every week.

    1.  I think the real loser is the person who cleans the toilets of a person who buys a $689 t-shirt.

      1.  No seriously, it’s the idiot that bought something for $689 that is worth about a $1.

        Doing a degrading job is just another example of how retarded the society is today, that accompanies that t-shirt.

  2. I do wonder if anyone buys something like that. I know there are crowds that wear the expensive designer Marc Jacobs and other designer label stuff (not the overpriced-but-theoretically-affordable stuff you might find in Bloomingdale’s, but the really expensive stuff from the boutiques). But t-shirts like this?

    It’s patently absurd on its face, and that’s the point, I imagine. It’s marketing. The SoHo crowd and internet menswear bloggers eat this stuff up (I follow menswear tumblrs and have seen this shirt pop up several times already) and Marc Jacobs gets some mindshare.

    Actually, Marc Jacobs has some surprisingly cool stuff, including rather cool (graffiti-inspired?) cartoon characters used as logos and on graphic t-shirts and the like. I dunno who wears it (it’s expensive) but I’ve seen it at Bloomingdale’s and thought it was neat :) But the point is, Marc Jacobs has some history with this sort of thing, they’re not a super-serious designer label that never has any fun.

  3. Waitiminnit.  Look at the pink shirt again.  The ‘S’ in Jacobs is a ‘$’.  Could Marc actually be having a laugh at his own expense here?
    And notice, if the text is correct, it costs $9 LESS with Jacobs’ signature.
    I think we’re getting trolled.

  4. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on here, or which artist is the right amount of edgy such that I should root for him. But assuming a simple linear progression, I am looking forward to buying the $1.78 double-meta t-shirt featuring a picture of the meta t-shirt.

      1. was that a sly reference to the way he ‘vandalises’ the aesthetic of those Louis Viton trunks?

  5. Copyright infringement?

    Kidult owns some valuable intellectual property here; Marc Jacobs (and Wilfry) are making unauthorised copies, which – as we all know – is piracy and funds organised crime and destroys jobs and contributes to global warming.

  6. Gotta hand it to the Marc Jacobs team for turning this one on its head. Kidult can make t-shirts of t-shirts of t-shirts all he wants, he got owned. I don’t care much for either side of this fight, but Jacobs basically said “My people will buy my shit for $$$ no matter what you do”.  And he’s right, they will. All press is good press for a graffiti artist, but he didn’t “win” anything agains Jacobs. And Jacobs got free advertising out of it. I’d never heard of either until reading this.

  7. A painting of the shirt of the shirt of that graffiti.

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