Should You Invest in Artist Skateboards?

There is a type of artwork that has grown in popularity with art investors over the past decade: The artist skateboard. 

Two Jeff Koons Skateboard editions

Since the inception of skateboarding, the skateboard has been adorned with images popular with those immersed in skating sub-culture. Nowadays, skateboards have been adopted by many artists, who print their work on the underside, to be displayed like you would a print on paper. Artists that have adopted the skateboard include Jeff Koons, Yayoi Kusama, Judy Chicago, and Paul McCarthy, to name but a few.

Artist skateboards are not meant to be ridden like you would a regular skateboard. Rather, they are intended to be hung on your wall like a painting. Alternatively, you can lean the skateboard deck against the wall, but I have never been partial to this art presentation. It doesn’t lend the artwork the air of gravitas that you get when you hang it on the wall. Special devices to secure the skateboard to the wall are available online.

The Appeal of the Art Skateboard

The appeal of skateboard decks, in my opinion, is two-fold. 

The first is the price of artist skateboards. Typically, skateboard art editions are relatively inexpensive. For example, A Yayoi Kusama limited edition skateboard “With All My Flowering Heart (2014)” was originally sold via The Broad museum for 590 USD.

Yayoi Kusama, With All My Flowering Heart, 2017

While 590 USD may sound like a lot for some, it is far smaller than the price for an editioned print on paper from Kusama. The example from Kusama is just one of many examples in the market. Thus, artist skateboards are one way for you to collect artists whose work may typically be outside your budget.

I think the look of the skateboard deck is the second reason artist skateboards have grown in popularity. The unique rounded rectangle shape is strangely appealing, and this can be enhanced when artists spread an image across multiple decks, like Kusama has done for the edition mentioned above. As a tangential thought in this domain, I would also suggest that displaying a skateboard deck gives collectors an associated edginess.

The Skateboard Auction

Perfectly illustrating the growing popularity of artist skateboard decks is Bonhams recent success with skateboard-only auctions, which they began holding frequently starting in 2020. In the inaugural auction, Bonhams showcased 152 artist skateboards. Most lots in this auction were sold, with many fetching prices far above their estimated values.

A collection of 152 full-sized Supreme skateboard decks, published by Supreme, New York between 2008-2019

Final Thoughts

Art decks can be limited edition or open edition, much like any other artwork. Generally, you should stay away from open-edition skateboard decks. A handy tip to determine if an artwork is limited edition; they will tell you.

The rarity of an artwork is an incredible selling point, so if an artwork is part of a limited edition set, it is likely to be stated as such. If you cannot find information about the number/size of an editioned artwork, then treat it as an open edition. 

You May Also Like:

Check out Masterworks, Public, and Yieldstreet and explore Art Funds that let you purchase shares in million-dollar paintings from blue chip artists like Banksy, Kaws, and Yayoi Kusama.

Read more: Review: Masterworks vs. Yieldstreet
Read more: Review: Masterworks vs Public

We welcome you to Contact Us with any questions you have about investing in art. Let us know your budget, the kinds of art that interest you, and we can work out a plan to get you started with art collecting the right way.