In anticipation of its Spring/Summer 2015 release, streetwear brand Supreme launched a new guerrilla poster campaign starring rock legend Neil Young. The image, which was shot by famed photographer Terry Richardson, features the 69-year-old musician against a stark white wall donning Supreme’s signature threads. It’s clean, off-beat, and, above all, cool to look at. So much so that a 28-year-old graphic designer, who identifies himself as “the Secret Squirrel,” couldn’t help but take one for himself while walking the streets of Chinatown on Tuesday morning.
“I just walked over and touched one and it was still sopping wet with paste,” he told NY Mag, “so I peeled it down, and it came right off. I was like, ‘Cool, I got one!’”
As soon as he returned from his walk, the Secret Squirrel had hesitation about displaying the poster in his crib; after all, he admits he isn’t the hugest fan of the brand, but is well aware of its cult following. So rather than hang it up, he decided to sell it online.
“I went on eBay and saw someone else listing one of these for $150, Buy It Now!” he explained. “I was like, ‘Shit, I should go get more.’”
Equipped with a Supreme duffle bag filled with box cutters, plastic bags, a palette knife, and a mini saw, the Secret Squirrel searched the dark streets of NYC for as many Supreme posters as he could find. The cold weather provided him with an advantage as the wheat paste was either frozen or extremely wet, making them extra easy to peel off.
At the end of his excursion, he had collected a total of 25 posters, and was quick to list several of them on eBay.
“I’m gonna space it out,” he told NY Mag. “If I list all 25 at once, let’s say there’s only 25 people interested in buying these, they would each go for a dollar.”
Funnily enough, this tactic is very similar to Supreme’s selling strategy, which involves releasing small drops of every product to ensure demand is always high. And we can’t imagine the brand being mad at the Secret Squirrel’s poster heist, as it is known for guerrilla-style marketing that sometimes involves vandalism.
“Only like 10 of the 25 are in really good condition, so I’m gonna list one in really good condition and one that’s really fucked up at the same time,” he said, “that way, someone who’s a cheapo can get a fucked-up one, and if they wanna spend a little more, they can get a crispy one.”
“You can’t buy these anywhere else,” he said. “Supreme doesn’t sell them. Maybe they would give them out to friends and family of the store, but those people wouldn’t sell them.”
Apparently, some of “those people” will. One eBay seller has listed authentic, never-been-used Supreme x Neil Young posters with an asking price of $300. But at least the stolen ones have a good story behind them.
[via NY Mag]