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Banksy is known for his graffiti street art that combines dark humor in his own distinctive technique, but still keeps his real name a secret. His works have been found on streets, walls and bridges all over the world. He’s part of the underground art scene and although most people just view his stuff as nothing more than vandalism, he is still a popular artist. Since he does not sell any photos or reproductions of his art, art auctioneers have been known to sell his street art as is at its location, leaving it up to the winning bidder to remove it however they may please.
According to Global Post, there will be an auction taking place that features some of Banksy’s work. It will be closely watched because of the uprising value of street graffiti.
Banksy’s “Kissing Coppers,” which is a black and white stencil of two police officers kissing, is apparently set to be worth between $500,000 and $700,000. This piece was originally done on the side of a pub in England in 2005. This piece of wall has been removed from its original location and was sold to the collectors who will be auctioning it off.
The other two works being auctioned off are “Crazy Horse Car Door” and “Bandaged Heart Balloon.” These pieces were done during his month-long “street residency” in NYC last year. During this “street residency,” he sent fans on a month long scavenger hunt around NYC where he debuted a new piece most days.
Pix 11 reports that this scavenger hunt featured a piece, which Banksy has called “the battle to survive a broken heart,” but is also known as “Bandaged Heart Balloon," that an art collector ripped off the walls of Red Hook. This painting features a heart shaped balloon on a string held together by Band-Aids. It is being auctioned off and the starting bid is $200,000. People expect the final bid to be between $400,000 and $600,000.
A waitress who works a few blocks away from where the heart painting was originally displayed says, “It’s just weird that a piece of a wall from our neighborhood could be worth, starting at $200,000.” People have a hard time understanding what’s so special about his art, but that’s exactly what Banksy’s point is. His work is different and keeps people wondering.
Some people, like Red Hook resident Ralph Lopez, didn’t even realize it was art. “I just thought it was one of these idiots putting things up on the walls like over here,” he said. “They put up signs ‘art is not a crime.’ No. Graffiti is a crime.”
Critics believe the art work should remain where it was originally done because removing it “takes away from the artist’s original intent.” But RJ Rushmore, who runs a street art blog, Vandalog.com, says, “The people who are buying this stuff, chopping it off walls, and putting it in their homes don’t realize they only have a piece of the puzzle.” Banksy continues to remain a famous mystery, and he’s keeping everyone interested in his works.
The auction, which will feature three of his pieces of art that were done on the sides of buildings, will take place on Tuesday night in a Miami.
Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons