Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles will host its inaugural Street Art auction on Thursday, December 5th, 2013. The event features the sale of Banksy’s Flower Girl mural. Flower Girl consists of a 9×8 foot section of brick wall and is one of Banksy’s signature murals. It drew crowds to the unassuming gas station in Hollywood, when it was created and has since fueled the fire of the “street art” movement on the west coast, ever since.
Now yet another example of Banksy’s early large format street art has been hacked from its public place and even though the artist will not receive a penny for its sale, the vandals who removed it stand to make millions from its dubious sale. Pest Control the official authentication board has continually denied to approve these works, as they are out of context and no longer what Banksy intended. In other words they were not created as gallery art and are no longer real Banksys.
Amid the growing controversy surrounding urban artists such as Banksy, the December 5th auction at Julien’s Gallery will undoubtedly continue to spark the debate over what constitutes “true” art. On the heels of the recent $1.1 million sale of the Banksy mural Slave Labor,in London. This is another work that was removed by a deal with the owner of the building where it was painted without permission. The sale went ahead against the wishes of Haringey council who stated it should be kept in situ where it was enjoyed by over a million visitors.
Banksy avoids confrontation and has remained silent over the sales of his work at auction. His identity remains anonymous. His world-famous artwork can be found on facades from Great Britain to Israel’s West Bank to the streets of Los Angeles. The majority of works by this controversial artist reflect his criticism of the government, presenting strong themes concerning surveillance and the government’s role in modern society.
Flower Girl, Banksy utilised his signature black aerosol stenciling to reveal a young girl in silhouette, with a basket of picked flowers, gazing up into a security camera which has blossomed from a tall plant. In his signature style, the camera is adorned with a long rattail, one of Banksy’s signature motifs. In Flower Girl, the artist poignantly juxtaposes the innocence of a young girl picking flowers with the curious and questioning gaze of someone not yet willing to back down. Banksy’s upward trajectory can be traced from his early days when he was labeled an “outlaw” to his current status as a world renowned artist. He has graffitied on gritty urban walls as well as on stretched canvas, produced works of conceptual sculpture, and been the subject of an Academy Award nominated film, “Exit Through The Gift Shop”.
The most logical way to stop this cultural destruction would be to shame buyers into not bidding for these works thus rendering them worthless!
The exhibition is open to the public at the Julien’s Beverly Hills Gallery starting Monday, December 2nd through Thursday, December 5th, 2013.