Despite Brexit, people still recognize the value in British artist Banksy. A SWAT van the graffiti artist sprayed went up for sale at a Bonhams Post-War & Contemporary auction in London. Dubbed SWAT Van, the work is covered in the signature style of street art that the artist became so famous for, including two of his trademark figure sketches. The piece was projected to sell for $400,000.
Both sketches are in line with the provocative political and social conversations Banksy loves to create. One on side, you can see a boy outsmarting a heavily-armed SWAT team and on the other you will find Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz covered in graffiti.
SWAT Van was first presented in 2006 at what is known today as Banksy’s breakout exhibition Barely Legal. The show was held in downtown Los Angeles and was his first exhibition in the United States. SWAT Van was sold to its current owner directly following Barely Legal, who has owned the work to this day. Bonham’s auction will represent the first time this Banksy piece will be offered for sale to the public.
Ralph Taylor, Senior Director of Bonhams Post-War and Contemporary Art department, said of the SWAT Van, ‘All of Banksy is on show here: his bravado, his imagination, his technical prowess, his confidence and his willingness to put his head above the parapet and use truth as a weapon.’
Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world’s largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. Together, the British artist and auction house create the perfect platform for Banksy lovers to get a hold of this unique work.