Banksy Banks Big Bucks at Street Art Auction
Banksy knows what's up. Rarely shows in galleries. Mocks Christmas consumerism in Bethlehem. Has people buying sections of wall that he's tagged. And now he's selling prints for thousands of pounds. Good effort.
UPDATED - We published a Houston Chronicle report earlier that Banksy had sold a Kate Moss print for close to $200,000 (see below). Thanks to NoLions for the update. We stand corrected.
Originating from the streets of Bristol, Brighton and London, growing up via galleries in the East End (TLSG and BRP well represented tonight), the street print and canvas fetish they call urban art arrived in the plush west end auction rooms of Bonhams tonight .
Standing room only as Banksy stole the show, with new records for signed and unsigned screenprints, and a high score of £190,000 plus about £50,350 in premium and taxes was reached for the multiple Laugh Now monkeys on painted board. Other Banksy highlights included £82,000 for the pink punk canvas, rather a lot for a picture which looks like it might belong in your daughter’s bedroom and the jaw dropping £80,000, that’s over £100k with add ons, for the signed editioned print, read it again..editioned, Kate Moss (30/50) which undoubtedly brought a smile to one seller’s face.
English graffiti artist Banksy's screen print of supermodel Kate Moss sold for $191,000 at a street art auction in London.
The work, inspired by Andy Warhol's iconic portrait of Marilyn Monroe, was one of 75 pieces of "urban art" on sale, Bonhams auction house said.
Many of the works were created with spray-paint and stencils and began life as street graffiti before being transferred to canvas.
"By definition (urban art) is an ephemeral art form, often disappearing as fast as it appears," Gareth Williams, senior picture specialist at Bonhams, said Tuesday. "By transposing their images from street wall to canvas, urban artists are now creating a permanent legacy."
Banksy refuses to give his real name, which has been variously reported as Robert Banks or Robin Banks. The artist, who does much of his work on exterior walls, rarely offers originals for sale.