With everything Kanye West said in 2013 about his ambitions in architecture and design, we thought it would be a good look to see how much he’s invested in actual design pieces. Unlike the largely hypothetical estimation of Jay Z’s art collection we did recently, there is solid evidence for precisely which pieces Kanye owns. And to simplify things, we’re excluding the visual artwork Kanye owns in this rundown, a collection that is comprised of pieces by Andy Warhol, Takashi Murakami, Burton Morris, and others. This is strictly about the high-end design pieces and architectural elements that Kanye calls his own.
Kanye's design collection comes from a roster of designers Kanye covets, and we've included a rundown of how much he has hypothetically approximately spent on each piece. Enjoy Estimating the Net Worth of Kanye West’s Design Collection.
Image via Marten Baas
Smoke Chair by Maarten Baas
When Dezeen tailed Kanye down to Design Miami in 2006, Kanye remarked to the designer Maarten Baas that he has several of the unique designer’s works, particularly in the “Smoke” series. In this series, Baas literally burned the wood. He then covered the burnt pieces in a clear protective coating, preserving them from further disintegration. At its most functional, the armchairs in this series, produced in the Netherlands by Moooi, go for around $4,700.
Image via BEB Italia
Mart Armchair and Charles Bed by Antonio Citterio
The Antonio Citterio-designed Mart armchair by B&B Italia was a favorite of Yeezy’s years ago. Kanye’s blog went up in smoke, so we don’t have a record of Kanye’s statement on the divine seat, but we do know that Kanye owned at least one of these bad boys. He himself posted the price at a whooping $6,937.
An in-depth look at Kanye’s crib for Interior Design magazine in 2007 also revealed that one of the beds in his house was designed by none other than Citterio. The padded masterpiece was crafted in 1997 and is also produced by B&B Italia. We found one retailing for £2,931.00.
Image via Fortuny
Floor Lamp by Mariano Fortuny
A floor lamp by the designer Mariano Fortuny is unmistakable. So, when we saw a photo of one in Kanye’s old Los Angeles crib not too long ago, we knew it right away. Considering this is a design that gets ripped off quite often, we don’t think Kanye would go for a replica. These “satellite lamps” go for around four or five thousand on eBay.
Image via Philips Auctions
Banquete Chair by Fernando and Humberto Campana
We know from his old blog, Kanye Universe City, that the first chair Ye bought for his New York apartment was designed by the Brazilian sibling team of Fernando and Humberto Campana. We also saw photos of the stuffed-animal clad sit-piece when Kanye was selling his custom Los Angeles pad earlier this year. A 2007 version of the design sold for £27,500 at a Philips auction in September.
Image via Y Living
Wiggle Chair by Frank Gehry
In those real estate photos, alongside Kanye’s Campana, was one of legendary architect Frank Ghery’s Wiggle Chairs. Made from a single strand of collapsing material and manufactured by Vitra, it’s an exquisite design from the architect. They’re not that pricey, selling for $1,140.
Image via Designboom
Elda Armchair by Joe Colombo
There just wasn’t enough room in Kanye’s game room for all the seating he required. That included yet another dazzling piece, the Elda armchair, named after designer Joe Colombo’s wife. It was one of the designer’s first pieces, looking both retro and futuristic, not to mention just downright comfortable. You can get these high design seats on the international vintage market for about €4,995.
Image via Style Park
Igloo Armchair by Eero Koivisto
Kanye's incredible furniture collection includes an electric-blue armchair by Eero Koivisto (it’s a favorite color of the designer). Produced by the Cappellini firm, these chairs often list for more than $2,000.
Image via CDN
Ceramics by Frances Palmer
A lengthy profile on Kanye West earlier this year by W Magazine’s Christopher Bagley brought to light a number of Kanye’s recent obsessions with big-ticket designers. And, as minute as a ceramic cup might seem, those created by noted ceramics artist Frances Palmer are not only exquisite, but quite pricey. The handcrafted items go for as little as $150 a piece. We’ll assume the set that Kanye owns means enough for a dinner party.
Image via Spatial Lighting
Lamps by Le Corbusier
The object that reignited our interest and Kanye’s fervor about breaking into the world of art and design: the Le Corbusier lamp. Kanye first mentioned the lighting device in a June interview with Jon Caramanica, saying it was his greatest inspiration for his new album. In the W profile from the same month, Christopher Bagley wrote that deliverymen were hauling in Kanye’s latest buys, which included “Le Corbusier lamps.” That’s plural lamps.
As Architect Magazine speculated earlier this year: “Corb designed several in 1954, several of which were reissued recently by Nemo-Cassina lighting. The Escargot isn't exactly a minimalist's lamp; smart money's on the Applique de Marseille or the Lampe de Marseille.” Though the publication is right about the minimal approach to these different lamps, something particularly brutal about the Escargot (shown above) strikes us in reminiscence of Yeezus. Those are £10533.20. The more Spartan of the designs are around €956—we’ll value Kanye’s lamps in the median.
Image via Luminaire
Table Lamps by Ingo Maurer
In a 2007 inside look at his Los Angeles home in Interior Design magazine, Kanye showed off a couple of conch-style Ingo Maurer table lamps. The German industrial designer is famous for his lighting, and his more refined table lamps are fairly pricey, at upwards of $1,000 each.
Image via Lolli e Memmoli
Crystal Chandelier by Lolli e Memmoli
In his Los Angeles apartment, Kanye revealed at least one large chandelier by Lolli e Memmoli. It resembles the V Rec version of the fixture. These exquisitely designed pieces with Bohemia-cut Italian crystal probably go for around $15,000 - $30,000, considering similar, not-as-refined designs. We’ll low ball this one.
Image via Claudio Silverstrin
New York Apartment by Claudio Silvestrin Architects
It was a well-touted event when the Italian architect Claudio Silvestrin designed an entire minimalist masterpiece New York City loft for Kanye in 2007—we finally got a glimpse inside this year. The apartment was valued at $4.5 million according to the New York Post. The apartment boasted austere stone columns and monster, nine-foot-long granite sinks. Though we couldn’t recover the exact price of this service by Silverstin, we’ll subtract the average price of a downtown New York City loft and leave the rest to design and building costs.
Image via Jeanneret
Chairs by Pierre Jeanneret
W’s Christopher Bagley spotted deliverymen hauling multiple chairs by the designer Pierre Jeanneret into Kanye's home. These mid-century modern designs are among the best in seating, elegant and cool and perfect for any environment. The less-adorned sell for €2,320.55. We’ll round up and multiply by three to account for the unspecified multiples in Bagley’s piece.
Image via Style Park
Living Divani Sofa by Piero Lissoni
Another tip-off in the W Magazine profile was that Kanye’s Paris pad features a Living Divani sofa, designed by Piero Lissoni. Bagley wrote that it was “gigantic.” We’re going to go with the modular design of Lissoni’s favored Extrasoft design. Each module of this amazing design costs upwards of £1,048.00.
Image via Find Brand Sales
Dishes by Hermes
The last nugget from the W profile was a prone Kanye eating stir-fried vegetables off of a designer Hermes plate. One of these dishes goes for $165. A whole dinner set to service eight people retails for more than $6,000. We assume Kanye has at least one of these.
There we have the basics of Kanye’s upper-echelon collection of designer pieces. While this can’t be exact or complete, we've made our best estimation of how much Kanye's high design trove costs. At lest one thing is clear: Kanye has amazing taste. It’s easy to covet any of the items on this list, but in reality, they would probably just look out of place in our apartments. And that’s because this collection costs more than our entire building.