Someone has purchased a "Microscopic Handbag" that’s reportedly smaller than a grain of sea salt for $63,750.
The tiny tote, which measures 657-by-222-by-700 micrometers, was sold on Tuesday, June 27, by Joopiter, a digital-first auction platform founded by media mogul Pharrel Williams.
While the identity of the buyer hasn’t been revealed, the "Microscopic Handbag" was created by the Brooklyn-based art collective MSCHF, which notably produced the controversial Lil Nas X Satan Nike Air Max 97 Shoes in 2021.
"Microscopic Handbag by MSCH," the art collective wrote in an Instagram post on Wednesday, June 14.
"Smaller than a grain of sea salt and narrow enough to pass through the eye of a needle, this is a purse so small you'll need a microscope to see it," the post went on. "There are big handbags, normal handbags, and small handbags, but this is the final word in bag miniaturization. As a once-functional object like a handbag becomes smaller and smaller its object status becomes steadily more abstracted until it is purely a brand signifier."
The item was created with two-photon polymerization printing methods, according to Joopiter’s product description for the Microscopic Handbag.
The bag itself is made with a photopolymer resin and the buyer who purchased it will also receive a gel case and microscope, so they can view the Microscopic Handbag at his or her leisure.
Pictures of the microscope’s built-in digital display shows the Microscopic Handbag is bright green and features what appears to be a Louis Vuitton logo, which resembles the luxury brand’s popular tote bag design.
It's unclear if LVMH (the parent company of Louis Vuitton) was involved in the creation and sale of the Microscopic Handbag, and the company has not made any public announcements as such at the time of this publication.
FOX Business reached out to MSCHF, LVMH and Joopiter for comment.
The line between art and branded trademarks and copyrights has apparently been a blurry one in the United States for decades.
MSCHF was ordered to stop producing and selling the Satan Nike Air Max 97 Shoes the art collective made in collaboration with American rapper Lil Nas X, after Nike filed a four-part complaint about the item being made without the sneaker company’s permission. The shoes reportedly contained a single drop of human blood in each sole.
Nike cited trademark infringement, false designation of origin/unfair competition, trademark dilution and common law trademark infringement and unfair competition, according to the lawsuit. The legal dispute was settled within a few months.
American pop artist Andy Warhol famously made his "Campbell’s Soup Cans" art installment between 1961 and 1962, which features 32 canvases using the Campbell’s logo as it coincided with each soup flavor, and he did so without the soup brand’s permission.
"Eventually, Campbell's Soup tacitly approved of his use because of the free marketing they were receiving, but Warhol's use of their logo without initial permission was still appropriation," according to a 2019 article published in Columbia University’s Journal of Law & the Arts.
The world-famous art exhibit is displayed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.