Our mystery street artist, Bansky recently did a residency in New York City. He was there for a month, produced a big portfolio, donated a work to charity and had the laws that be after him because of balloons.
I rate Banksy and think he’s done much good for the inner city, for street art and for all things contemporary. We may not know who he is but we know his work and we know others (if not he himself) are making a goodly profit from it.
One day on the mean streets of the Big Apple, small Banksy’s were on sale for $60.00. No one knew who the artist was and only a few sold. Literally a handful.
I don’t think I’d have bought one.
But if I’d known it was a bargain Banksy bite my hand off. I’m in for as many as I can carry. Plus some.
It’s all about the name isn’t it? And the resale.
Maybe that’s not how this artist thinks but oh so many others oh so obviously do. As do their collectors. I’m not so sure it’s a good thing. And I’m saying that in light of the recent Bacon sale.
Sorry how much?
$142,000,000 is how much.
Sadly never to be seen again.
There is a yin to this gross inflated yang however and it began in the 1980’s.
Just beyond Vienna there’s a place for artists who fall outside of the mainstream. Their overwhelming desire is to produce art as a pleasure, a way of communication, a life force even.
This is the Gugging Gallery and the House of Artists where a few lucky souls actually live. The art is as varied as the inhabitants and visiting artists.
Most if not all the exhibitors would not be considered ‘normal’ within the constraints our society demands. But these guys exhibit on an international stage now. Some get paid big bucks.
Leonard Fink lives and draws in this Brut Art community. His works command upward of 6000 euros. They are intricately detailed maps of both real and imagined places.
I have seen his work in The Museum of Everything on the Southbank in London. it may not be my cup of tea but the creativity is beyond doubt.
Dan Miller is an American who works in San Francisco. He has Autism. His art replaces speech. His words are crafted into beauty. All his works are untitled. He is permanently exhibited in the MOMA, New York.
There are many many more outside artists worth your time and investigation.
And occasionally one becomes so inside their modus changes and their reputations, like Bansky’s, precede them. Joe Coleman is a case in point.
In from the out he is now collected by the likes of Johnny Depp and Leo Di Caprio. There is a waiting list for his work.
We cannot expect to like every piece of art we are exposed to. That would be pure silly. But what is important is that be they Bansky, Bacon or Brut artists we keep on exposing ourselves to all art not just the accepted mainstream.
I had been thinking about writing about Banksy’s street sale for some time but last night I watched Alan Yentob’s Imagine (BBC One) and found my theme.
An associated post: IMAGINE This: Alan Yentob You Are Costing Me a Fortune