Skip to main content

Unbelievable: Meet Piero Manzoni - The Artist Who Became Famous for Selling His Own Poop (Photos)

An artist has stunned the world after coming up with the rather bizarre idea of selling his poop in the name of art. 

Piero Manzoni
Ask anyone if they would pay anything to own another’s person’s poop, and they will most likely say “hell, no”. But everything changes when the said poop becomes a work of art. Case in point, “Artist’s Shit”, a collection of 30g tin cans allegedly containing the poop of Italian artist Piero Manzoni. Art collectors are buying them for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
When Piero Manzoni came up with the idea to can his own poop, in 1961, he probably had no idea that his 30g metal containers would one day sell for astronomical prices. In 2007, the Tate art gallery in London, bought one of Manzoni’s 90 cans for £22,350 ($30,000), and while that may seem like a lot for what is literally just canned crap, they actually got a great deal.
In 2007, another can of “Merda d’Artista” was auctioned off in Milan, for a whopping £81,000 ($108,000). Crazy, right? Not really, just another good deal, because Manzoni’s cans of poop are currently worth around $300,000 apiece. Last year, someone bought can no. 54 for £182,500 ($242,000). At this rate, they’ll soon be worth millions.
The artist's poop
So who was Piero Manzoni? Apparently, he was originally an aristocratic Italian artist specializing in conventional painting, but that all changed one day in January 1957, when he visited an exhibition of Yves Klein’s blue paintings at Galleria Apollinaire in Milan. The display of canvas after canvas of simple blue paint had a huge impact on 23-year-old Manzoni, completely changing his perception of art.
In 1958, the young artist exhibited his first avant-garde artworks, a series of completely white, ‘achromatic’ pictures, and followed that up, just a year later, with some sheets sealed up in boxes. ,”On the boxes would be written the length of the line, its date and, of course, his signature,” Tony Godfrey writes in Phaidon’s Conceptual Art Book. “Here was a truly immaterial and invisible work: if the seal was broken it ceased to be art.”
Manzoni just kept putting out unconventional artworks, like a series of hard-boiled eggs signed with his thumbprint, a series of balloons inflated by him, called “Artist’s Breath”, and in May 1961, he created the work he would become most famous for, “Merda d’Artista”.
Taking advantage of his father’s can factory, Manzoni created a collection of 90 tin cans, all signed by him and labeled as “Artist’s Shit, Freshly Preserved, Produced and Tinned in May 1961”. Each contained 30g of poop and was originally priced according to the gold market at the time, which meant that Manzoni was literally selling his crap for its weight in gold.
The point of “Merda d’Artista” was to highlight and satirize the gullibility of post-WW2 art collectors, who, fueled by the country’s economic boom, would spend big money on virtually anything, even poop. But even Manzoni himself couldn’t have foreseen that his tin cans would end up selling for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Piero Manzoni died in 1963, at the age of 29, and never got to enjoy the success of his most controversial piece, to its full extent. Those who knew him said that he had all kinds of outrageous projects lined up, but he sadly never got the opportunity to share them with the world.
Do “Artist’s Shit” cans actually contain Manzoni’s waste, or anyone’s waste, for that matter? According to Agostino Bonalumi, who worked with the Italian artist, the containers are filled with plaster, “I can assure everyone the contents were only plaster,” Bonalumi told Corriere della Sera. “If anyone wants to verify this, let them do so.”
But that’s the thing, no one will dare open one of the cans to see the contents for themselves, not with them costing them a fortune as works of art. Popping the lid of one of the 90 cans pretty much compromises its value as a collector’s item, and many believe that the mystery is actually a big part of the artwork’s charm.
At the same time, the contents of “Artist’s Shit” tins raises question of authenticity in art. If an artwork is not what it’s supposed to be, does it really deserve all the attention it gets, and the money spent on it? It’s an interesting dilemma, to be sure, one that it yet to be solved.


Popular posts from this blog

Check NYSC Senate Approved List of All Institutions for the 2017 Batch ‘B’

National Youth Service Corps, NYSC senate list is out. The portal for verifying the senate approved mobilization list (2017 Batch ‘B’) of various institutions in Nigeria is live.
This is to inform all prospective corps members (2017 Batch ‘B’) that they can now check the senate approved mobilization list of their various institutions on the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) portal for free.
See also: NYSC Batch ‘B’ Mobilization Exercise Timetable – 2017
HOW TO CHECK NYSC SENATE APPROVED LIST. 1. Go to NYSC senate list portal at 2. Select your Institution. 3. Supply your Matriculation Number and Surname in the required columns. 4. Select your date of birth. Finally, click the ‘SEARCH’ button to access your mobilization status.

Scary News About Your Cellphone

File photo

The war rages on about the safety of cell phones.  One side argues there’s either nothing to fear, while the other warns that your phone is causes grave harm when it comes into close contact with your body. Citing the views of other experts Dr Joseph Mercola tries to show where the real truth lies.

The year 2014 marked the first time in history that there were officially more mobile devices than people in the world – approximately 7.2 billion.

Although significantly lower, the number of cell phone users is forecast to reach 4.77 billion by the year 2017.

That’s a lot of cell phones and cell phone users. But what’s even more fascinating about all these mobile devices is the behaviour that surrounds them: The average cellphone owner checks their phone 110 times a day, or about nine times each hour; and 46 percent of smartphone owners say “they couldn’t live without” their phones

Cell Phone Safety


Nigerian Navy commences recruitment of graduates

The Nigerian Navy has commenced the process for the recruitment of suitably qualified Nigerian graduates through the Nigerian Navy Direct Short Service Commission (DSSC) Course 25.
The guidelines for the enlistment can be accessed on the Nigerian Navy Enlistment Portal which will be opened on October 11 for interested candidates to apply online.
Interested applicants, who must be Nigerians by birth, should possess a minimum of Second Class Upper Division for first degree holders and Upper Credit for HND holders. Male applicants must not be less than 1.68 metres tall while female applicants must not be less than 1.65 metres in height. Applicants should be between 22 and 28 years by 31 January 2018, except for Imams and Chaplains who should not exceed 30 years by January 31, 2017.