Rivington Street. London, 31 May 2001.

The first Banksy “exhibition” in London took place on Rivington Street on 31 May 2001. Banksy produced twelve stencils. In Banksy’s own words: “We came out of a pub one night arguing about how easy it would be to hold an exhibition in London without asking anyone permission. As we walked through a tunnel in Shoreditch someone said – You’re wasting your time, why would you want to paint pictures in a dump like this?”

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Banksy’s twelve stencils at Rivington Street
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Rivington Street, flyer
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Rivington Street – Overview

Chiapas. Mexico, 2001

Banksy joined the Easton Cowboys, a radical football team from Bristol. In 2001 they went to Chiapas in Mexico to play against a football team from EZLN – Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional. Banksy played as a goalkeeper. During the stay in Chiapas the Banksy team completed a few nice stencils and at least two free-hands.

Severnshed. Bristol, February 2000.

After moving to London in early 2000, Banksy went back to Bristol in February the same year, where he opened his first regular exhibition in his own name at the restaurant Severnshed, behind the docks. It’s was a mixture of stencil and acrylic. All pieces were priced under £ 1,000. The “Self-portrait” of Banksy,  with a chimp head,  sold for £ 198,000 at Bonhams in 2007. There are two remarkable pieces – “Simple intelligence testing” and “Sharks”.

Photos: Melfleance, Flickr

Early Bristol freehand, 1995 – 1998

The walls of Easton in Bristol were the canvases for Banksy’s early freehand work. Collaborations with Inkie and other prominent figures from Bristol street-art scene.