35 Holiday Gifts for the Art Lover in Your Life
Here are the best art-inspired presents to suit all budgets.
Wondering what to get for your friends and loved ones this holiday season? Or looking to expand their cultural horizons with gifts created or inspired by artists? From clothing and accessories to books and home decor, the editors of artnet News have pored over whatever we could find and selected our favorite gifts for you to choose from. Enjoy and be merry!
Meret Oppenheim Fur Bracelet
From the GEMS AND LADDERS art jewelry collection, this 18-karat burnished gold and fur bracelet is a recreation of one Meret Oppenheim made in 1936. She was wearing it when she first met Pablo Picasso and Dora Maar, and the ensuing discussion led directly to the creation of Le Déjeuner en fourrure, the surrealist fur teacup for which Oppenheim is best known.
Price on request
“Vague” by Andrea Mary Marshall
A hit at this year’s NADA Miami Beach, Andrea Mary Mashall’s “Vague” magazine series takes VOGUE covers and gives them a contemporary art makeover in a follow-up to her 2011 “Toxic Women” exhibition. Blake Lively, for instance, becomes Yayoi Kusuma in The Dot Issue, while The Holy Virgin Issue reimagines Lupita Nyong’o as Chris Ofili’s infamous elephant dung-embellished painting. Limited edition prints of the clever paintings are available in a variety of sizes at ArtStar.
The Prospect NY X Baron Von Fancy ‘Dinner Coupe Set’
Baron Von Fancy has teamed up with Prospect New York on a collection of fun home goods (plus a golden nameplate necklace reading “BABE”) featuring the playful phrases that have become the artist’s trademark. Take, for instance, the dinner plate set, which reads, “Eat Me,” “I Crave You,” Sweet as Pie,” and “Wine Me, Dine Me, 69 Me.”
Electric Objects EO2
Can’t settle on a single work of art to hang above the fireplace? The interactive picture frame that is EO2 allows you to change your home decor at will. You can opt for masterpieces from the annals of art history, but the company is also commissioning work from contemporary artists exploring the new frontier of digital art, accessible through a subscription-based Art Club discovery service. The latest collection, “Space Is the Place,” features out-of-this world images from NASA as well as Adam Ferriss‘s digitally-manipulated Deep Space photography.
Carry This Book by Abbi Jacobson
In addition to being one half of the the brilliant duo that created and star in Broad City, Abbi Jacobson also happens to be a gifted illustrator and wickedly funny writer. Merging her many talents, she imagines the contents of the bags of famous figures, present day, historical, and fictional. Andy Warhol, for instance, carried various different pairs of glasses, Interview magazine, a Polaroid Ccamera, and a matchbook from Studio 54, while Beyonce stocks up on Cheerios for Blue Ivy and Cholula hot sauce, all drawn with brightly-colored markers.
I’m Comic Sans, Asshole” Mug
Every graphic design aficionado’s least favorite font gets a call-out in this pitch-perfect mug from the always-irreverent McSweeney’s.
Season’s Greetings: Holiday Cards by Celebrated Artists From the Monroe Wheeler Archive
Sometimes Christmas cards can all start to look the same. Not so in this book, featuring unique handmade designs sent by artists including Jean Cocteau, Max Weber, and Robert Parker to Monroe Wheeler, the director of exhibitions and publications at the Museum of Modern Art (1939–67).
The gift shop for Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari’s TOILETPAPER magazine Toiletpaper Shop! is full of fun, quirky goodies—think pessimistic faux-marble tombstones and cheeky rugs—but we especially recommend these ultra-affordable enamel mugs. In pastel shades of blue, green, and beige, they feature unnerving images like this one of a bar of soap bitten in half.
Jen Stark Artworks Live Case for Google Pixel Phone
Along with designs by Friends with You, Faile, and astronaut-photographer Chris Hadfield, Google is selling trippy, psychedelically colorful phone cases for its new Pixel phone by Jen Stark. (If you’re still using a Nexus phone, they make them for those too.)
Jonas Wood, lambswool blanket
Studio Voltaire’s Mayfair House of Voltaire pop-up shop in London rarely disappoints. The shop is filled with Christmas gifts designed by artists from blankets like the one designed by Jonas Wood above to items by Turner and Hepworth Prize winner Helen Marten, a F**K YOU 2016 bumper sticker by Jeremy Deller, a rain hood emblazoned with dogs by Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, and prints from Sol Calero and Mark Wallinger to boot.
We love this blanket for getting cosy in the winter months but there is plenty more to choose from at House of Voltaire.
Art is the Highest form of Hope & Other Quotes by Artists
Why is it that artists seem to come up with killer quotes?
Phaidon has compiled the perfect book of quotes, divided up into sections including sex, technology, success, and the art market and typeset exquisitely for your pleasure. The perfect stocking filler for the art lover in your life and an endless source of quotables for dinner party emergencies.
Paloma Powers World Domination Calendar
“Art agency for a post-everything world” Paloma Powers has released a calendar for 2017 and you have to ask yourself this question: can you live without it? Featuring Powers’ favorite artists, including Ying Miao and Jonathan Turner, this calendar will keep you feeling cutting edge all year round. Plus, 25 percent of all sales will go to Planned Parenthood.
Curious Feast: 100 Postcards by 10 Artists
What could be better than the combination of art, food, and handwritten correspondence? This set of 100 postcards features an awesome variety of food inspired art, from French design collective Brest Brest Brest’s vintage black-and-white photographs artfully augmented with carefully placed strands of spaghetti, sugar crystals, and other foodstuffs; and Joël Penkman’s appetite-inducing egg tempura paintings; to Mimi O Chun’s stuffed sculptures of trendy dishes like Van Leeuwen’s perennially-unavailable red currant ice cream.
Jeff Koons Balloon Dog Plate
What do you buy for the art lover that has everything? How about a Jeff Koons Balloon Dog from Almine Rech? This diminutive version of Koon’s most enduring masterpiece would be a welcome addition to any collection—just don’t drop it, as it is made of porcelain and easily broken.
The gallery’s online story also offers a plethora of beautiful art books, including volumes by Chloe Wise and James Turrell. Other items by Koons, such as a Michael Jackson Banality plate, are on sale too.
Price on request
Zaha Hadid Field of Towers Chess Set
This stunning chess set by Zaha Hadid Design was produced in a limited edition of 200. For any lover of the architect’s work, this ingenious design, which includes a hidden draw in the base of the board, would be an ideal gift. The set is part of a collection produced by Zaha Hadid and London’s Serpentine Galleries which are on display at the Serpentine Shop alongside their current exhibition “Zaha Hadid: Early Paintings and Drawings.”
There are only two of these left in the world—one black board, one silver—so if you want one, you’ll have to be quick.
You Are Here: NYC: Mapping the Soul of the City by Katharine Harmon
History and cartography nerds should delight in this compendium of 200 maps of New York City, dating from 1600 to 2015. The soul of city that never sleeps is perfectly captured in this many-faceted view of the five boroughs by everything from a rundown of pizza delivery routes to Andy Warhol’s map of Central Park.
Tracey Emin More Passion Cuff
Tracey Emin has collaborated with jeweler Stephen Webster Couture Jewelers to create “I Promise to Love You,” a collection of fine jewelry including this black resin cuff emblazoned with the words More Passion. Around 10 percent of the cost of the £3,750 ($4,745) diamond version, the bracelet is made in collaboration with (PRODUCT)RED, so 25 percent of the sale price goes to the charity the Global Fund to fight AIDS with (RED).
Pipilotti Rist, Your Neck Through The Atmosphere (I Copulate With The Sky) Women’s Scarf
Consider this another chance to wear one of the season’s hottest museum shows: Hauser & Wirth is selling limited edition scarfs by Pipilotti Rist, subject of “Pixel Forest” at the New Museum, New York.
The gallery’s shop also features a cashmere blanket by Mary Heilmann and Ida Applebroog lithographs, among other gift options.
Agnes Martin Folded Wrap-Over Skirt by COS
The critically-acclaimed Guggenheim exhibition of Agnes Martin’s minimalist line paintings has spawned an entire collection from COS, the upmarket sister-brand to H&M. The show is open until, giving would-be Instagram stars the chance to pose in their oversize Martin attire next to one of her quietly elegant canvases.
Beautiful Minecraft by James Delaney
The popular online building game Minecraft is simple in theory, but artists have used the program to create breathtakingly detailed virtual building and landscapes. Millions of blocks and hundreds of hours later, the results are absolutely stunning, from underwater fantasy worlds to a spot-on replica of the White House in Washington, DC. Who says video games can’t be art?
Alex Katz H&M Swimsuit
At age 89, artist Alex Katz has teamed up with H&M on a colorful new line of clothes featuring his iconic portrait paintings. The collection, which launched in Miami Beach during Miami Art Week, is available online and in select Miami stores. Note that if you’re looking to pick up the artist’s favorite item from the collection, he told H&M that “I’ll certainly wear the hoodie and the T-shirts.”
Ebony G. Patterson, making roots…
Ebony G. Patterson is just one of 96 artists featured in Swoon’s Heliotrope Foundation limited edition art prints series, first introduced in 2012. The latest additions to the run, curated by Molly Krause, feature work by Rashaad Newsome, Kenny Scharf, Aidan Koch, Emilio Perez, and Anne Spalter. It’s affordable art by big name artists, and all of the proceeds go to the non-profit, which supports Swoon’s community arts projects in Haiti, New Orleans, and the Rust Belt town of Braddock, Pennsylvania.
Randy Glance, Psychedelic Fashion Twins Hiding From Dinosaurs Metal Lunch Box
A Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen-inspired lunchbox from artist Randy Glance is among the offbeat offerings of the Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan 1994 Museum gift shop, which also include a commemorative poster for the two figure skaters, fine art prints, and “cucumber and guava glitter aura cleansing vegan room spray.”
Johanna’s Christmas: A Festive Coloring Book for Adults by Johanna Basford
Adult coloring book queen Johanna Basford, who has taken the best-seller list by storm with her ornately intricate designs, turns to Christmas trees, holly, and gingerbread as the inspiration for her latest tome.
Frida Kahlo Tote Bag
What Frida Kahlo fan wouldn’t want a bag, from society6, emblazoned with her 1940 Self-Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird?
John Currin Beach Towel
The newest entries in Art Production Fund’s artist towel series include this dreamy design from John Currin. You can also pick up towels from other featured artists including Laurie Simmons, Kehinde Wiley, and Yayoi Kusama, not to mention your own little piece of the Instagram sensation that was Ugo Rondinone‘s Seven Magic Mountains.
Mickalene Thomas Trays
Mickalene Thomas drew on her personal textile collection to create this limited quartet or patterned melamine plates for the Santa Monica Museum of Art on the occasion of her 2012 exhibition “Mickalene Thomas: Origin of the Universe.” The set is now sold out, but you can still snag it at Chairish.
Rachel Howard‘s “The Humble Hanger” Necklace
Blain|Southern is selling this elegantly-simple design from artist Rachel Howard, produced in collaboration with True Rocks. Your choice of 18 carat yellow or rose gold, and large or small pendant, each sold in editions of 50.
small £950 ($1,160)/large £1,250 ($1,550)
The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen & Yayoi Kusama: A Fairy Tale of Infinity and Love Forever
The Dutchman’s most famous fairy tale gets new life with illustrations from beloved Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, published by the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, located just outside Copenhagen.
Molly Young and Teddy Blanks, Periodic Table of NYC Trash Poster
There’s something strangely satisfying about Molly Young and Teddy Blanks’s meticulous documentation and categorization of New York City trash, from packing materials (twist ties, bundled cardboard) to food and drink (gum blister packs banana peels). Photographed in situ and then arranged in a pristine periodic table, it’s a brilliant snapshot of the city, as told through discarded objects. Sure, garbage is gross, but don’t tell me this wouldn’t look fabulous on your office wall.
Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese, Fuck Snow Globe. Courtesy of the New Museum.
Ligorano/Reese, Fuck Snow Globe
A cheerful red snow globe with an adorably foul-mouthed message by Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese, available from the New Museum gift shop in New York. The perfect desk accessory, albeit not for the uptight office.
Vitamin P3: New Perspectives in Painting by Barry Schwabsky
Proving yet again that painting is far from dead, the third edition of Vitamin P, Barry Schwabsky’s international overview of the state of contemporary painting, features over 100 artists, including Ella Kruglyanskaya, Oscar Murillo, and Imran Qureshi.
BAO BAO ISSEY MIYAKE Prism Tote
You couldn’t walk through an fair in 2016 without spotting one of these fabulous geometric bags by Issey Miyake, a current best seller at the gift shop of New York’s Museum of Modern Art. A splurge any fashionista will appreciate.
OMG Posters: A Decade of Rock Art curated by Mitch Putnam
Oftentimes an overlooked art form, the gig poster, advertising concerts by rock and indie bands, gets its moment in the sun in this new compilation from OMGPosters, a decade-old art blog showcasing the work of independent artists. Over 300 concert posters and prints from 40 artists are featured, offering an instructive snapshot of the intersection of design and music over the last ten years.
Damien Hirst, For the Love of God Kids’ T-shirt
Inspire the next generation of YBAs with this child’s t-shirt of Damien Hirst’s most ostentacious work, the diamond-crusted platinum skull that is For the Love of God.
Magnum Photobook: The Catalogue Raisonne
For the first time, the Magnum photo agency has released a richly-illustrated bibliography of 1,000 photo books published by its members. In an age where we are constantly bombarded by images, this volume offers a fascinating look at the history of the medium and the evolution of the photo book.
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