The current trend for feature walls has increased commissions for muralists in the UK. A large hand-painted mural can be designed on a specific theme, incorporate personal images and elements and may be altered during the course of painting it. The personal interaction between client and muralist is often a unique experience for an individual not usually involved in the arts.
In October 2018, one of Banksy's works, Balloon Girl, was sold in an auction at Sotheby's in London for £1.04m. However, shortly after the gavel dropped and it was sold, an alarm sounded inside of the picture frame and the canvas passed through a shredder hidden within the frame, partially shredding the picture.[134] Banksy then posted an image of the shredding on Instagram captioned "Going, going, gone...".[135] After the sale, the auction house acknowledged that the self-destruction of the work was a prank by the artist.[136] The prank received wide news coverage around the world, with one newspaper stating that it was "quite possibly the biggest prank in art history."[134] Joey Syer, co-founder of an online platform facilitating art dealer sales,[137] told the Evening Standard: "The auction result will only propel this further and given the media attention this stunt has received, the lucky buyer would see a great return on the £1.02M they paid last night, this is now part of art history in its shredded state and we'd estimate Banksy has added at a minimum 50% to its value, possibly as high as being worth £2m+."[138] A man seen filming the shredding of the picture during its auction has been suggested to be Banksy.[139][140] Banksy has since released a video on how the shredder was installed into the frame and the shredding of the picture, explaining that he had surreptitiously fitted the painting with the shredder a few years previously, in case it ever went up for auction. To explain his rationale for destroying his own artwork, Banksy quoted Picasso: "The urge to destroy is also a creative urge".[141][142] (Although Banksy cited Picasso, this quote is usually attributed to Mikhail Bakunin.) [143] It is not known how the shredder was activated.[144] Banksy has released another video indicating that the painting was intended to be shredded completely. The video shows a sample painting completely shredded by the frame and says: "In rehearsals it worked every time...".[145]
The disadvantages of pre-fabricated murals and decals are that they are often mass-produced and lack the allure and exclusivity of an original artwork. They are often not fitted to the individual wall sizes of the client and their personal ideas or wishes can not be added to the mural as it progresses. The Frescography technique, a digital manufacturing method (CAM) invented by Rainer Maria Latzke addresses some of the personalisation and size restrictions.
In February 2015 Banksy published a 2-minute video titled Make this the year YOU discover a new destination about his trip to Gaza Strip. During the visit he painted a few artworks including a kitten on the remains of a house destroyed by an Israeli air strike. ("I wanted to highlight the destruction in Gaza by posting photos on my website—but on the internet people only look at pictures of kittens") and a swing hanging off a watchtower. In a statement to The New York Times his publicist said,
De retour dans son atelier Stéphane troque son crayon pour ses pinceaux jusqu’à plus d’heure ; il aime prendre son temps. Le trait est fin, les détails léchés, au point de pouvoir compter les poils. Mais ce sont généralement les yeux de l’animal qui fascine le spectateur. Un regard sauvage que Stéphane dépeint avec justesse avec un petit supplément d’émotion.
Following in their footsteps came the sons of local families who, until about 1914, constituted what has been called 'the Berck School'.[30] These included Francis Tattegrain, who was encouraged to take up art by Lepic;[31] Jan Lavezzari, son of the town architect who was also a friend of Lepic;[17] Charles Roussel (1861–1936), who settled in the town in 1886;[32] and Eugène Trigoulet (1864–1910).[33] After World War I the town and its inhabitants continued to be represented artistically by Roussel and by Louis Montaigu (1905–1988).[34] Fishermen in interiors were a speciality of the latter.[35]
Among the structures photographed prior to the opening were a large pinwheel by Banksy,[10] Horse Scaffolding Sculpture by Ben Long,[11] and a twisted truck sculpture, Big Rig Jig by artist Mike Ross which was previously shown at Burning Man in 2007.[12][13][14] Works by 58 artists, including Jenny Holzer, Damien Hirst, Jeff Gillette, Jimmy Cauty and Bill Barminski were featured in the park.[4] Banksy said he contacted the "best artists I could imagine" to exhibit, with two artists turning him down.[15]
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