New Banksy exhibition "The Mystery of Banksy - A Genius Mind" opens in Munich
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New Banksy exhibition "The Mystery of Banksy - A Genius Mind" opens in Munich
Mystery of Banksy. Image: Dominik Gruss.

MUNICH.- He’s world famous but still a mystery – Banksy, the Bristol-born and to this day anonymous graffiti artist and painter, known for challenging the boundaries of the art market, who has been causing a sensation with his work for many years. With “The Mystery of Banksy – A Genius Mind”, a brand new show in honour of the art icon arrives to Munich!

The new exhibition, which is seen for the first time, documents the entire creative period to this day with more than 100 motifs of the street art artist: graffiti, photographs, sculptures, video installations and prints on various materials such as canvas, fabric, aluminum, forex and plexiglass, including some originals, which were reproduced and collected especially for this exhibition. A specially produced video documentation sheds light on the most important career stages. The works are not for sale.

Highlights of the exhibition include: the globally unique, true-to-original replica of the London Underground carriage that Banksy sprayed with masks and rats in July 2020 with the message: "If you don't mask, you don’t get". It's a precious snapshot as this graffiti was only visible for a few hours before being removed by the cleaning staff. Visitors can immerse themselves in London's Under-ground –
authentic with original seats, timetable and soundscape. Another exciting element is the "Zone 8" – an "Immersive Experience"! Here, projections, music and original sounds are shown for several minutes to recreate a subway station where Banksy's works appear – an intense experience as if you were floating in the middle of the subway and art. The work "Girl with Balloon" caused a sensation in 2018 by going halfway through the shredder right after being auctioned off at Sotheby's. "The Mystery of Banksy – A Genius Mind" is the only exhibition in the world that shows a reproduction of this. Another unique piece is the "Devolved Parliament" – this work of art which had been sold for a record sum in 2019 was also reproduced true to original for the exhibition and is presented in the impressive technique of "Video Mapping".

The Banksy exhibition is curated by Creative Director Guillermo S. Quintana. The 37-year-old Mexican artist now lives in Berlin. Banksy influenced the connoisseur of the street art industry from the very beginning. With his design experience, his art evolved into street art and tape art. He created numerous installations, murals and paintings and curates international festivals and exhibitions.

Banksy, who touches people with his ironic, political but always poetic works, is an underground fighter, king of street art and even a hotel operator. When the city of Bristol had its citizens vote in 2009 whether Banksy works should be removed from the cityscape, 97 percent decided against it. A clear vote for his art. Banksy is a star far beyond the boundaries of the art market. Back in 2010, Time Magazine put him on their list of the 100 most influential people in the world for the first time, alongside personalities such as Barack Obama, Steve Jobs and Lady Gaga.

In the meantime, the phantom of the art world has long since made art history. Millions, and amongst them also in the classical sense less art-savvy people, know and admire his works. In particular, it is his recent work such as the painting "Game Changer" as a dedication to the hospital staff in Southampton or his guerrilla action with the world-famous rats in the London Under-ground that made him increasingly popular. Many of his works have also found their way into everyday commercial life. The question of whether street art can be commercialised is written on an-other paper or in for discussion. Can his art be exhibited or can street art in general be shown in a museum or in galleries? After all, Banksy is also synonymous with rejecting commerce. And yet his messages should reach everyone!

Spectacular promotions and auctions
Spectacular and sensational was his Dismaland Horror theme park action in 2015 which attracted around 150,000 visitors to the dreary Weston-super-Mare in England in just a few weeks. In 2018, he caused a sensation at the auction of one of his best-known works, "Girl with Balloon”: Shortly after being auctioned off for 1.2 million euros at Sotheby’s in London the painting was destroyed on site by cutting the lower part into stripes through a shredder hidden inside the frame. Up to that point the record price for a Banksy artwork was around 1.7 million euros, it was achieved at an auction in New York in 2008. In 2019, the 2009 oil painting "Devolved Parliament", showing the British Parliament being populated by monkeys, landed again at Sotheby's in London, earning a record sum of 9.9 million pounds (11.1 million euros). Banksy himself wrote on Instagram: "It's a shame it's no longer mine." Banksy had sold the painting in 2011. A triptych on the refugee crisis called "Mediterranean Sea View 2017" brought in 2.4 million euros in 2020, twice as much as expected. The artist donated the money to a Palestinian hospital.

In an elaborate and unique setting, the exhibition provides a comprehensive overview and insight into the entire work of the exceptional artist. According to Banksy's motto "Copyright is for losers ęTM", this hommage is not officially authorized.

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