This artist feud reached an extreme level of pettiness that we are down to watch
Two artists have major beef over the rights to use certain colors, and worry not, this deliciously petty feud over paint is even more fun to watch than it sounds. It all started when, earlier this year, artist Anish Kapoor bought exclusive rights to a newly invented shade of black so dark it received its own name (vantablack). According to the scientists who invented vantablack, it is so dark that it absorbs all but 0.035 percent of visual light, and Kapoor is the only one who can use it in his work.
However, while Kapoor is the only artist in the world with access to vantablack, he’s also the only artist in the world without access to “the world’s pinkest pink.” As you could probably guess, it’s a very, very pink pink in the form of powdered paint, available for sale on Stuart Semple’s website. That is, unless you are Anish Kapoor or one of his affiliates.
Semple, a fellow artist, offers two disclaimers attached to the product: 1) the very honest confession that he’s “not actually sure if this is the worlds pinkest pink ever, it could well be! It’s the pinkest we could come up with, and we’ve not seen anything pinker,” and 2) that “by adding this product to your cart you confirm that you are not Anish Kapoor, you are in no way affiliated to Anish Kapoor, you are not purchasing this item on behalf of Anish Kapoor or an associate of Anish Kapoor. To the best of your knowledge, information and belief this paint will not make it’s way into that hands of Anish Kapoor.”
Similar disclaimers are offered for “the world’s most glittery glitter,” which Semple also offers in his online shop to all but Kapoor. Leave it to the artist community to find a way to throw this much shade, literally over shades.
According to Semple, it’s all about giving Kapoor “a taste of his own medicine.” Rather than trying to hoard artistic resources and keep them from Kapoor, Semple is not only hoping that his products will help bolster the creativity of fellow artists who use them, but also that his clever ploy will move Kapoor to rethink his own hoarding and cede his exclusive rights to vantablack. Semple has called Kapoor’s ownership of vantablack “stingy, shortsighted and immoral” and called Kapoor “the selfish one” in this whole debacle.
“I believe materials should be open and that way the community can develop them,” Semple told BuzzFeed. Semple also said that while he has never personally met Kapoor, they share mutual friends who have told Semple that Kapoor is interested in using “the world’s pinkest pink,” but still has yet to break and “#ShareTheBlack.”
Of course, Tumblr was the medium through which this feud went viral, and Tumblr user aashequi put it best when he/she wrote: “I’m not sure which is more beautiful: that shade of pink or that SHADE.”