An original art work by the legendary street artist, Banksy, for a Greenpeace Save or Delete campaign photographic poster, sold for £78,000 last night (11 January 2011) at Bonhams
, New Bond Street, as part of its Urban Art sale. The unique piece (lot 67), which was given to the vendor by the artist himself, was among a host of Banksys that fetched top prices in the sale.
It was commissioned by Greenpeace to highlight the problems of global deforestation as part of their Save or Delete campaign and features some of the main characters from Disneys The Jungle Book transposed onto a picture of a devastated forest. Intended for use on posters, billboards and postcards, it was printed, but never put into circulation because of the protectionist policies at Disney. It is believed that the vendor of this lot is donating a percentage of the proceeds to Greenpeace.
Other Banksy highlights in the sale included Portrait of an Artist, circa 1998, believed to be the first work that he created for sale, which sold for £60,000; Everytime I Make Love To You I Think Of Someone Else, 2003, which made £42,000; Balloon Girl, 2004, which fetched £12,600; and Rude Copper, 2002, which sold for £9,600.
The sale saw an enormous turn-out and competitive bidding (both on the phone and in the room) following Bonhams two-year break from holding Urban Art auctions.
Other works to achieve excellent prices included a performance piece (lot 18) created by American graffiti artist, Futura 2000, for punk rock band The Clashs Combat Rock tour, which sold for £38,400 (estimate £15,000 20,000); French artist JRs Street Kid, Favela Morro da Providencia, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, 2008, which made £31,200 (estimate £15,000 20,000); and the catalogues cover lot, Shepard Faireys Peace Goddess on Wood, 2008, which fetched £27,600 (estimate £8,000 12,000).