Banksy likes blotter art, not keen on Sotheby’s show
The graffiti artist offers a little insight into his unauthorised London show, as well as some trippy appropriation
Most contemporary artists would be rather pleased if Sotheby’s S|2 gallery showed their work. The West London exhibition space, which opened in 2012 and serves as a private-sales gallery for the auction house, has hosted shows dedicated to Joseph Beuys and the Düsseldorf School of Photography. Yet not all of S|2’s exhibitors are equally happy it seems.
Banksy, the British graffiti artist, appears to be displeased with his forthcoming ‘unauthorised’ retrospective at S|2. The show, which previews tonight and runs until 25 July, has been organised by Banksy’s former manager, Steve Lazarides, who parted company with the artist in 2008 and now runs his own gallery, Lazarides Rathbone. The retrospective features a wide selection of prints and paintings from Lazrides’s own Banksy collection, and some of the works are for sale.
So, what does Banksy think? Well, in the Q&A section of his site the artist writes, in response to the question “What's the deal with Sotheby's?”, “As a kid I always dreamed of growing up to be a character in Robin Hood. I never realised I'd end up playing one of the gold coins.” The site adds that, “Banksy is not represented by an art gallery, is not on Facebook and has never used Twitter.”
Banksy writes more approvingly about other work; he admits to painting the surveillance-themed wall work in Cheltenham earlier this year, and, with the posting of this picture (below), appears to express admiration for the use of one his early works in a perforated blotting-paper sheet commonly used to distribute doses of LSD.
Artist endorsement or no artist endorsement, Banksy fans are free to view the works from tomorrow. Find out more about the show here. For Banksy's response go here. For greater insight into artworks created outside the gallery system, from graffiti to bodily implants, take a look at our book, Wild Art.