A photograph has been released of the interior of Banksy’s East London studio. It shows several examples of work in progress, ahead of the 2012 Olympics. The elusive artist is also seen in the frame, in this rare snap.
Many journalists have speculated that Banksy will use the Olympics as the backdrop for a number of high profile murals and installations in the capitol. Next week should see this realised, despite a crackdown on graffiti during the games.
The various London authorities, in the Olympic venue areas have categorically stated that any public graffiti will be power washed, as soon as it is discovered. Whether this applies to the internationally respected master of the stencil remains to be seen. A large-scale Banksy mural was recently offered by a New York gallery for $250,000. These were removed from the ‘no go’ Berlin wall style boarder between Israel and Palestine.
Banksy’s work typically includes satirical social and political commentary, and ranges from murals to sculpture and installation, often playing with the contextual aspects of the work. The artist’s first solo show was held in 2002 at Los Angeles’ 33 1/3 Gallery, and in 2003 he was commissioned to design to cover of Blur’s ThinkTank. Today, Banksy’s work appears internationally; most notably, he painted nine sardonic images on the Palestinian side of the West Bank barrier. In Summer 2009, Banksy took over the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery with an exhibition attracting over 300,000 visitors and hour-long queues all the way down the road. Most recently the artist has experimented with film, achieving an Oscar nomination for his documentary Exit Through The Gift Shop.