Site Visit: Remains of Banksy's Street Art
September, 2017 | London
'Shop Until You Drop', Bruton Street, London
After hearing the rumours that Banksy’s Brexit Mural will be sold, we dashed out to take a look at some iconic pictures Banksy did some time ago in London before they all disappeared. Shockingly, the status of most his graffiti is appalling. They have been mostly drawn over, partially damaged, or an attempt made to tear them away. One can imagine the motivation behind such violent acts – resentment, jealousy, stealing, making fun, and so on. Does that lead us to ask questions like: should we protect a good piece of street art? Should we condemn and even prosecute those responsible for the violence committed against artworks? One would probably argue that the nature and fate of street art are inevitably tragic. One could also ask about the legitimacy of painting over a public space in the first place. There are no easy answers. Maybe the role of art is to create controversy and conflict, subsequently trigger awareness, other than about the artwork itself!?