There are two types of unauthorized Banksy-exhibitions; on one side, three exhibitions with authentic Banksy studio pieces. Unauthorized by the artist but well-curated displays of special edition screen-prints, canvases and other unique material, all with Certification of Authenticity issued by Pest Control together with high-quality ephemera. One of these exhibitions is “Art of Banksy”, last seen in Covent Garden in London and Washington DC. (The Art of Banksy was initially curated by former agent Steve Lazarides.) The other ones are “Banksy – the Art of Protest” – previously labelled as “Genius or Vandal?” and “Building Castles in the Sky”, last seen in New York and curated by Andipa. The three of them source their pieces from long-term serious collectors. One can assume they are not very popular with the Banksy camp, but nevertheless, they are honest and well-executed exhibitions and, above all – authentic artwork.
On the other side: more than 20 ongoing exhibitions around the world with 100% fake Banksy artwork, squeezing out the exhibits mentioned above. Typically these fake exhibits consist of bad reproductions of street art and shoddy copies of his most iconic canvases and screen-prints. The organizers often promote the fake studio pieces as being authentic. To make it even more fake and confusing, one of these shady operators has copied the name of The Art of Banksy from the exhibit mentioned above.
The photos are from the 100% fake exhibit World of Banksy in Barcelona, still open at Espacio Trafalgar in the centre of the city:
Wouldn’t it be great if Banksy set up his own touring exhibition and rooted out all these fake ones?