@smurph I agree with you analysis but not your conclusion that the deep pockets must make dedicated fans. A good few makers have raised their prices, or become more exclusive with their boom in popularity, or both. But at the end of the day they're toymakers; their target market is nerdy adults. Hirota is changing that way. Seeing his work show up on Murakami's account and his collaboration with Haroshi, I feel he's also making a name for himself in regular old fine art collecting circles. And that's fine; he doesn't owe fans anything and he can sell as he wishes. But that target market is deeper pockets than I can dream of, and a whole lot of bullshit. It's absolutely collectors regarding each piece as an investment. So I'd guess a good few buying at these prices are also making a gamble: I could own an original Hirota now, before it's worth five times even what I paid. Different game altogether. I know I'm speaking prematurely and hope this is one of those Skullbrain opinions that ages really badly as the future unfolds. But to my eyes Hirota is going the way of KAWS in the designer toy scene. Not painting himself into a corner but actually trying to sail away.