5 Essential Designer Art Toys You Need to Know About
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 6 min read


  1. KAWS: Companion
  2. Bearbrick
  3. Kidrobot: Dunny
  4. Funko Pop!
  5. Qee Bear

Designer art toys have carved a niche for themselves in the realm of collectibles. Gaining popularity for their fusion of art and functionality, these toys are more than just playthings. They are miniature masterpieces that appeal to both art lovers and toy enthusiasts. From vinyl figurines to resin sculptures, these toys come in a variety of forms, each with its own unique charm. Today, we're going to explore five such wonders that have left an indelible mark on the designer art toy scene.

KAWS: Companion

If there's one name that's synonymous with designer art toys, it's KAWS. Brian Donnelly, the man behind KAWS, has revolutionized the designer art toy industry with his iconic 'Companion' series. Let's delve into what makes this collection so special.

The Origin

Introduced in 1999, the 'Companion' series was KAWS's first foray into the world of designer art toys. The design—characterized by its cartoonish aesthetics, x-ed out eyes, and Mickey Mouse-esque gloves—quickly gained traction, becoming a cult favorite among collectors.

Material and Size

KAWS's Companions come in a variety of materials—vinyl, bronze, and even wood. The sizes are just as varied, ranging from 4 inches to larger-than-life, 20-foot installations. The diversity in size and material allows you to choose a Companion that's a perfect fit for your collection.

The Impact

  • The Aesthetic Appeal: Companions are known for their unique blend of street art and pop art aesthetics. This fusion has not only made them visually appealing but has also redefined the boundaries of what designer art toys can be.
  • The Cultural Significance: Over the years, KAWS's Companions have transcended the realm of designer art toys, becoming cultural symbols. They've been a part of parades, featured in music videos, and have even graced the cover of magazines.
  • The Collector's Dream: Thanks to their limited availability, Companions have become a coveted item among collectors. Owning one is seen as a statement of one's love for designer art toys.

Whether you're a newbie or a seasoned collector, KAWS's 'Companion' is a must-have. They're not just toys; they're pieces of art that embody the spirit of designer art toys—creativity, uniqueness, and a whole lot of fun!


Next on our list of designer art toys is the widely loved Bearbrick. Produced by the Japanese company Medicom Toy, Bearbrick toys have become a global sensation, adored by artists, collectors, and celebrities alike. Let's discover why this bear-shaped figurine holds such a special place in the world of designer art toys.

The Design

The Bearbrick, as the name suggests, is a bear-shaped brick toy. It boasts of a simplistic design - a pot-bellied bear with articulated limbs. However, it's the canvas of its body that truly sets it apart. From abstract patterns and pop culture references to collaborations with world-renowned artists, each Bearbrick is a unique piece of art.


The variety of Bearbricks is mind-boggling. They come in different series, each with its own theme. Be it horror, sci-fi, or even cute characters, there's a Bearbrick for every taste. Not to mention, their sizes range from a pocket-friendly 2.75 inches to a whopping 27.5 inches!

Collectibles and Collaborations

  • Unique Collectibles: Bearbricks are released in limited quantities, making each piece a unique collectible. The thrill of chasing a rare Bearbrick and adding it to your collection is one of the many reasons why collectors love these toys.
  • Exciting Collaborations: Bearbricks are known for their collaborations with high-end brands, artists, and even movies. These collaborations not only add to their appeal but also make them a perfect blend of pop culture and designer art toys.

Whether it's your first time buying a designer art toy or you're an avid collector, a Bearbrick is a worthy addition to your collection. After all, who wouldn't love a toy that's a perfect embodiment of art, pop culture, and fun?

Kidrobot: Dunny

Let's move on to another iconic name in the realm of designer art toys: Kidrobot's Dunny. These rabbit-like vinyl toys are not just toys, but miniature pieces of art that pack a punch of creativity and individuality. Here's why Dunny deserves your attention.

What is Dunny?

Dunny, produced by Kidrobot, is a rabbit-like figure with distinctive, long ears. The name "Dunny" comes from a combination of "street slang" and "bunny". Interesting, isn't it? But what makes these designer art toys stand out is their unique design. Each Dunny features a fresh design from an artist, making every piece a distinctive work of art.

A Canvas for Artists

The beauty of Dunny lies in its simplicity. The basic Dunny is a blank canvas, allowing artists to let their imagination run wild. From graffiti and surrealism to pop art, there's a Dunny for every art lover out there.

Why Collect Dunny?

  • Express Yourself: Dunny is more than just a toy—it's a form of self-expression. By choosing a Dunny, you're choosing a piece of art that resonates with you.
  • Artist Appreciation: Dunny serves as a platform for artists to reach a wider audience. By collecting Dunny, you're directly supporting these artists and their creativity.

So, are you ready to dive into the world of Dunny? Whether you're an art enthusiast or a toy collector, Dunny offers a unique way to appreciate art and celebrate creativity. After all, who said toys are just for kids?

Funko Pop!

Switching gears, let's delve into the universe of Funko Pop! If you're a fan of pop culture, chances are you've come across these delightful designer art toys. But what is it that makes Funko Pop! so irresistible to collectors? Let's find out.

The Charm of Funko Pop!

What sets Funko Pop! apart is their ability to capture the essence of hundreds of pop culture icons in a cute, compact form. From superheroes and villains to beloved TV show characters, Funko Pop! has it all. It's like having your favorite characters right on your desk!

Collectible and Affordable

Another aspect that makes Funko Pop! stand out is their affordability. Unlike other designer art toys, Funko Pop! provides a more accessible entry into the world of toy collecting. Plus, their compact size means you can amass a vast collection without needing a warehouse to store them all.

Pop Culture Galore

  • Wide Range: With Funko Pop!, you can find almost any character you can think of—from Harry Potter to Darth Vader, they've got it covered.
  • Exclusive Editions: Funko Pop! often releases exclusive editions of their toys during events like Comic-Con. These limited-edition figures can be a unique addition to your collection.

Whether you're a seasoned collector or just starting out, Funko Pop! offers a fun and accessible way to dive into the world of designer art toys. So, why wait? Start your Funko Pop! collection today and bring a piece of pop culture to your home.

Qee Bear

Next on our list of must-have designer art toys is the Qee Bear. Originating from Hong Kong, these quirky toys have taken the world by storm. But what makes Qee Bear a must-have for any serious collector? Let's dig in.

What's in the Design?

The Qee Bear, with its round shape and large head, has a distinctive style that sets it apart from other designer art toys. But the real charm lies in the endless variety of designs. Each Qee Bear is a canvas for artists, showcasing everything from intricate patterns to pop culture references.

The Artist's Toy

What sets Qee Bear apart is its appeal to artists. Many Qee Bears come blank, inviting artists to bring their creativity to life. It's not just a toy—it's a medium for artistic expression.

The Qee Bear Experience

  • Exclusivity: While you can find Qee Bears in many toy shops, some designs are exclusive to special events and exhibitions. This makes them highly sought after by collectors.
  • Variety: In the world of Qee Bear, variety is the spice of life. No two Qee Bears are the same, making each one a unique piece of art.

When you bring home a Qee Bear, you're not just adding a toy to your collection. You're bringing home a piece of art. So, why not add a dash of color and creativity to your designer art toys collection with a Qee Bear?

If you enjoyed learning about designer art toys and want to explore how technology is influencing the world of art and design, don't miss the workshop 'The Insane Potential of AI-Generated Art and Design' by Aunia Kahn. This workshop will open your eyes to the endless possibilities that AI can bring to your creative process and help you stay ahead of the curve in the ever-evolving world of art and design.