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Pokémon Van Gogh Museum Scalper Controversy refers to the backlash against the horde of scalpers purchasing limited edition Pokémon merchandise at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, during a collaboration between the museum and the franchise in late September 2023. The horde of scalpers attempting to purchase the limited products, likely to resell them, resulted in numerous viral videos and criticism of the event and the scalpers themselves spreading online.
On September 28th, 2023, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam held the first day of an exhibit featuring illustrations of various Pokémon in the style of painter and artist Vincent Van Gogh (examples shown below).
The opening day of the exhibit was reportedly swarmed by people, many believed to be scalpers, attempting to buy any merchandise they could get from the exhibit. On September 28th, TikToker monkeloidtv posted a video of the horde at the museum, gaining over 137,000 views in four days (shown below).
@monkeloidtv Pokemon van Gogh #vangogh #shinypokemon #pokemonvangogh ♬ origineel geluid – Monkeloidtv
The video was quote-tweeted by influential Pokémon fan Joe Merrick on September 28th, 2023, gaining over 1,300 retweets and 10,000 likes in four days.
In addition to the viral video, evidence the event was overrun by scalpers was present on resell sites like eBay, where myriad items, particularly a Pokémon card with a portrait of Pikachu in a grey hat, were listed for over $1,000 (shown below).
The Pokémon Center website was reportedly going to sell some of the merchandise from the exhibit, but minutes after it went live, items there were sold out. In response to the fiasco, Pokémon released a statement apologizing for the soldout merch on their social media accounts on September 29th and promised that they would work to produce more merch for the collaboration in the future (shown below).
There are no videos currently available.