Auctioneering! Two original Banksy artworks – bought for $60 each – are set to sell for £120,000 at auction


It sounds like a joke – and a pointed and cutting joke at that, on auctions and the art market by British graffiti artist Banksy.

The sale of two artworks by the … camera-shy artist at Bonham’s Auction House in July will benefit a buyer who bought the pieces in New York – at a stall, in Central Park – during the graffiti artist’s “Residency in the Streets,” in October of last year, in the streets of the Big Apple.

Banksy played tag with fans, critics and law enforcement officials during his month-long tenure in NY. “Better Out than In,” his open-air “art show” featured graffiti, installations, and sculptures; see the links below for our coverage of the general mayhem that was.

One lucky buyer, a tourist, who bought two original pieces at an unassuming stall for $60 each, which is a normally exorbitant price for the souvenirs usually sold at the outdoor stalls of Central Park, stands to make a not-so-small fortune at auction. The works – one featuring children standing on a hill of guns and bombs, and a Pooh Bear crying over a pot of honey marked with a dollar sign, have been authenticated by Banksy. The starting bid for the both is £120,000.

The Guardian reports that: “Gareth Williams, head of contemporary art at Bonham’s, said the Central Park stall was a coup. “The fact that his paintings were original and were being offered at a tiny fraction of their true retail value, raises real questions about the perception of worth and the nature of art as commodity within the marketplace – something that the artist must be acutely aware of.”


See the artist’s video record of the Central Park event, linked here.

Previously on Art is Life:

Banksy’s “Better Out Than In” artwork shows up at Art Miami

Banksy’s NY “residency” is over; Le Monde retraces the street artist’s steps and asks: “Genius, or impostor?”

October 25th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets” 

October 13th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets”

October 11th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets”

October 10th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets”

October 8th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets”

October 7th, 2013 ____________ Banksy’s “BETTER OUT THAN IN” – New York “residency in the streets”

“Better Out Than In” Banksy’s “residency on the streets of NY” is happening during October

“Stolen” Banksy Mural withdrawn from auction

Laugh now, but you know that Grafitti and Street Art are no longer THAT relevant when they grace Paris art gallery walls… voilà “Au Delà du Street Art”

“Exit Through the Gift Shop” Banksy’s film about street art, the graffiti artist’s own work… and ultimately the state of the Art Market

“The bad artists imitate, the great artists steal – Picasso…” er, Banksy

Banksy served his own take on Warhol and pop art at MoMA – “buon appetito!”

Blu paints the facade of the Acrobax show, in Rome

“If you want someone to be ignored then build a lifesize bronze statue of them and stick it it the middle of town.” – Banksy

The Joy of Internets – Banksy animated


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