The battle for the blackest black rages on. In one corner, you have Vantablack, touted as the blackest black substance in existence. And in the other, artists who want access to Vantablack in order to create the blackest paint. Unfortunately, when British artist Anish Kapoor co-opted exclusive rights to the pigment, many an artistic dream was dashed. That is, until fellow Brit Stuart Semple joined the fray.
Semple struck back, creating a collection of colors that Kapoor is banned from purchasing. This ranges from the “world’s pinkest pink” and “greenest green” to his pièce de résistance, Black 2.0. This affordably priced (150 ml costs about $15) acrylic paint is black cherry scented and held together with Semple’s heavy duty Super Base, which binds the pigment.
To buy what is hailed as “the most pigmented, flattest, mattest, black acrylic paint in the world” clients are actually asked to certify that “you are not Anish Kapoor, you are in no way affiliated to Anish Kapoor, you are not purchasing this item on behalf of Anish Kapoor or an associate of Anish Kapoor. To the best of your knowledge, information, and belief this material will not make its way into the hands of Anish Kapoor.”
Cheekiness aside, Semple admits that while Black 2.0 isn’t the blackest black in the world, it will give the black hole effect you’re after and ships worldwide. And just to get in one last shot, “it is however a better black than the blackest black in the world as it is actually usable by artists.”
A quick search for #SharetheBlack on Instagram will pull up images of how artists are putting the blackest paint around to good use. From handpainted photographs to disguising toy models, it seems to be doing the trick just fine.
Black 2.0, as well as other specialty pigments, can be purchased via Semple’s Culture Hustle website.