Contemporary art works created by well known artists such as Damien Hirst, Boxi, Bansky, Marc Quinn, Tracey Emin and Rachel Whiteread have traditionally been well out of the average person's price range, but a few innovative companies are changing the art market and making it easy for consumers to create their own masterpieces with DIY contemporary art projects.
A London-based company called iArtistLondon has developed a set of high-art DIY kits that provide all the elements you need to create your own contemporary artwork.
Budding artists can purchase a box that contains a plastic human-sized skull, crystal beads, glue, paintbrush, tweezers, silver paint and instructions to recreate Damien Hirtst's Love of God - an artwork that cost 14 million pounds (16.9 million euros) to produce. The kit costs £49.99 (€60).
Also on sale at iArtistLondon: the iQuinn kit (£20.00), Marc Quinn's Self ("a sculpture made out of the artist's own blood that had been collected over a year"); the iEmin (£15.99, €19), Tracey Emin´s Everyone I have Ever slept with 1963-1995; Turner Prize-winner Rachel Whiteread's Pink Torso (£4.99, €6); six of Banksy's famous stencil designs (starting from £9.99, €12); and DIY iPhotographer kits that will help you create artworks from your own photographs (starting from £15, €18 for a customized stencil).
iArtistLondon is not alone on their quest to bring contemporary artwork into living rooms.
The Jailbreak is a collective of artists making "product art." Their aim is to transform the existing art market - which heavily relies on the gallery-collector model by reconceptualizing the way in which people can purchase art. The expensive one-off artworks found in galleries have been replaced in favor of much more accessible "product art."
On June 22 urban art blog, UrbanArtCore, stumbled onto a "how-to Stencil Art" video of Berlin-based stencil artist Boxi showing how he creates one of his famous six-layer hand-cut paper stencil artworks.
Looking for more inspiration? HowToons and Instructables are two websites with lots of DIY projects for you to try at home.
HowToons is a DIY site that turns simple how-to instructions into an artwork of its own. Each "how-toon" is presented as a comic and provides helpful instructions for projects such as making a trash bag raincoat, making instruments, and constructing your own underwater scope.
Instructables is one of the greatest online DIY resources for creative types. The website features thousands of user-submitted projects that range from creating DIY vinyl wall art to framed color-changing LED art to creating your own pixel art.