UPDATE: The Banksy mural, scheduled for auction this past Saturday, February 23, 2013, was removed from sale, reports BBC News.
A spokesman for the auction host vaguely said, “Although there are no legal issues whatsoever regarding the sale of lots six and seven by Banksy, FAAM (Fine Art Auctions Miami) convinced its consignors to withdraw these lots from the auction and take back the power of authority of these works.”
Claire Kober, a council member speaking on behalf of the Haringey, London residents who have a love, loss for the mural, said it was “a true credit to the community” that their campaigning seemed to have “helped to stop the sale of this artwork from going ahead.”
“We will continue to explore all options to bring back Banksy to the community where it belongs,” she said.
The landlords of the building, where the mural was drawn, were rather quiet this past week, leading people to believe they may have given permission for the mural to be removed. But, it turns out, that’s not the case. Robert Davies and Les Gilbert own the freehold on the Poundland store in Wood Green, which used to feature the work Slave Labour, until it was cut out off the wall. The two men are reportedly, “mortified,” according to the London Evening Standard.
UPDATE: 02/22/2013 — In response to the famed Banksy mural going missing, street artists have been showing their outrage in the form of art, reports the Londonist.
If you missed our post earlier this week, a Banksy sketch of a young boy at a sewing machine has been suspiciously removed from the side of a Poundland store on Whymark Avenue in Wood Green, north London, and just as mysteriously appeared as part of an online auction in Miami.
Since then, Banksy supporters, and possibly Banksy himself, have been decorating the empty spot with a tiny, fluorescent, hot pink dinosaur; a “Danger Thieves” warning sign; and, interestingly enough, a Banksy-like drawing of a rat holding a sign saying, “Why”. It’s not clear if the rat is the real thing but locals are already putting acrylic glass over the image just to be safe.
Mini Hot Pink Dinosaur/”Danger Thieves” Poster
Sad Faced Rat with a “Why?” Sign
Acrylic Glass Installation
A Londonist Facebook fan pointed out the irony of the Banksy sketch appearing on a street called “Whymark”. Possibly the irony gods were like, “Don’t mark this spot,” and karma had it removed. Well, karma or not, we’re still wondering who actually approved the removal? The landlord of the building is rather quiet.
Since the story broke, The Smoking Gun reports that the sketch was removed for sale “apparently with the approval of the building owner.” The landlord of the building has not addressed any inquiries directly. Possibly he’s on holiday and doesn’t get cell service; already spending the bounty he’d get off the sale if indeed he did agree to the auction.
What do you think of the new additions to the empty space?