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Gallery 98

“Kostabi World,” oversized print handout, c. 1988

Having reached the pinnacle of the East Village art scene, Mark Kostabi established “Kostabi World,” a studio in the tradition of Warhol’s Factory, where he employed a team of “assistants” to execute his paintings—deliberately exaggerating the commercial aspect of his practice.

9″ x 9″.


Kostabi World


Kostabi World


Kostabi World produces art in the manner of Reubens, Rembrandt and Raphael, where art is considered a profession. Instead of work for the church or the state, I am individual working for myself, expressing my inner imagination using the industrial method.

Art as business? I recognize money as an inevitable means to continue production. I’m basically one person who has a brain with ideas pouring in all the time. I want to get all of them made. I only have two hands and I must have money to hire people to execute my ideas. It’s that simple. Every cent I make goes right back into the creativity. I prove that an artist can live without the art system. I have abandoned the art world and created my own world, Kostabi world.

Mark Kostabi

CEO, Kostabi World