Banksy exhibition in Charlotte: Some interrogative reproductions

A worldwide exhibition of works by elusive British street artist Banksy which opened in Charlotte on Friday is being denounced by some local critics, as it is elsewhere in the world.

The Art of Banksy: Without Limits features more than 155 works, including prints, photos, sculptures, installations and murals – some of which have been reproduced specifically for the exhibition, The Charlotte Observer reported last year. when plans for the Queen City shutdown were announced.

About 1.2 million visitors viewed the exhibit in Istanbul, Amsterdam, Melbourne, Berlin, London, Seoul and other cities, according to a news release about the exhibit’s appearance in Charlotte. Atlanta hosted the show’s US premiere in September 2021, and the show traveled to Miami last month. Charlotte is her third stop in the United States, at AvidXchange Music Factory.

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“The Art of Banksy: Without Limits” features more than 155 works, including prints, photos, sculptures, installations and murals, some of which have been reproduced specifically for the exhibition. larry barnard

Banksy never authorized the exhibition, and some of the works on display are reproductions by others, major media in other countries reported, as did the Observer in its June 2021 article on plans for the Charlotte stop.

A press release about Charlotte’s show says the exhibit includes “more than 155 works by the artist such as certified originals, prints, photos, lithographs, sculptures, murals and mapping installations. video created only for this tour”.

The statement also states that “more than 20 of Banksy’s works are carefully reproduced with his stencil technique specifically for the exhibition, including his March 2021 creation ‘Escape’ originally appearing on the closed Reading Prison in England. , and “Pulp Fiction” with likenesses from the movie stars Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta pointing bananas instead of guns.

According to the release: “Other highlights include Banksy’s 2015 pop-up amusement park ‘Dismaland’ installations, ‘Flower Thrower’ and ‘Kissing Coppers’ prints and ‘Death of a Phone Booth’ sculpture.”

“Visitors will find conversation starters around every corner of this exhibit as Banksy is an exciting and fascinating artist who we are thrilled to share with the public for the first time in Charlotte,” said Martin Biallas, CEO of SEE Global Entertainment, quoted in the press release. .

His company brought the exhibit to Charlotte.

Banksy is anti-capitalist, so it’s ironic, critics say, that others profit from his name and works. Tickets for the exhibit in Charlotte are $27.20 for adults, according to the exhibit’s website.

“For those who say that Banksy himself would never consent to a show like ‘The Art of Banksy: Unlimited’ because it goes against what he stands for – you may be right”, reported the Observer last year. “A note on banksy.co.uk states: ‘Members of the public should be aware that there have been a recent string of Banksy exposures none of which are consensual. They have been staged entirely without the knowledge or without the knowledge of the artist. Please treat them accordingly.

Representatives for SEE Global Entertainment did not respond to requests for comment from the Observer on Saturday.

Refunds in South Korea

When the Banksy show visited Seoul, South Korea, in August 2021, local organizers offered refunds to those who wanted to cancel their tours, the Korea Herald reported at the time. Visitors to the exhibition had posted comments expressing their dismay that many of the works were not Banksy’s, according to the newspaper.

It didn’t take long for a similar adverse reaction to occur in Charlotte on Friday.

On Twitter, food and culture site Inside 485 called the exhibit “false advertisingand slammed local media for promoting the exhibit.

“Recreations and Prints”

“It’s not Banksy art you’ll see,” Inside 485 wrote in one of many tweets about the exhibit. “These are recreations and prints of Banksy’s art.”

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Banksy never authorized the exhibition, and many of the works on display are imitations by others, major media in other countries reported, as did the Observer in a June 2021 article on plans for the Charlotte stop. larry barnard

“There are local art exhibits that never get promoted at Charlotte’s legacy outlets,” Inside 485 wrote. “Why does this out-of-town exhibit of stolen art benefit of such publicity, I cannot say. And our local outlets probably won’t feel the need to justify their decision-making.

These comments generated their own reaction, including one who wondered why all the fuss.

“Majority of artwork shown in ANY gallery or exhibition is not made in collaboration with the artist,” replied a woman with the Twitter handle. The future of retro. “I really don’t understand this hill where people are dying for Banksy. He sold these coins to private collectors. Collectors lent it to the exhibition. It’s simple.

SEE Global Entertainment also presented Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel exhibit in Charlotte in May 2021.

This story was originally published February 27, 2022 7:00 a.m.

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Joe Marusak has been a reporter for The Charlotte Observer since 1989, covering locals, towns and major news events in the area, and served as editor of the newspaper’s press office. He is currently reporting on the latest news.

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