The Unnamed Artist

"Art is never finished, only abandoned." -Leonardo da Vinci

Emma Crow, Journalist

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With the rise of social media over the years, the world of physical art has slowly been slipping into the shadows. People are more interested in the art of photoshopping the perfect Instagram selfie than a painting that took weeks or even years of work to perfect.

There are, however, many artists who demand that their work be acknowledged by using serious subjects as inspiration for their art. Banksy, a popular anonymous street artist, is known for his pieces using dark humor combined with political messages to make controversial statements to the public.

His art is most commonly found on the streets of England, but Banksy’s work can also be found in places as close as Las Vegas.

Although Banksy is popular in the art world, his name is not very common among the general public; however, one of his recent artsy antics earned him a segment on numerous news channels, such as FOX 5 and NBC News.

A couple years ago, the anonymous artist secretly built a paper shredder into the picture frame for one of his most popular pieces of work, Girl with Balloon, in anticipation for the day it would go up for auction.

As soon as the piece was sold for $1.37 million at an auction in London, someone in the crowd hit the button that soon shredded Banksy’s work, leaving everyone in the room with a sense of shock.

Banksy’s painting Girl with Balloon that was shredded at an auction. Photo credit to: actionnewsnow.com

 

There have been many debates on whether or not the artwork is worth more now that it’s shredded, or if it has lost its value.

Mrs. Dabrowski, the art teacher for PVHS, believes that the painting is worth more because the event brought a lot of publicity, and the original buyer of Girl with Balloon would agree because he decided to buy the work anyway despite it being moderately destroyed.

Banksy is most popular for his street art, which is often done on the sides of buildings or even in more unusual places, such as the backside of a Welshman’s garage.

 

Banksy’s masterpiece with a message, Season’s Greetings. Photo credit to: culturecable.art.blog

His graffiti titled Season’s Greetings features a little boy presumably playing in the falling snow; however, around the corner it can be discovered that the joyous snow is actually hot ash spewing from a burning garbage can.

Because of this, people from all over the world have traveled to Port Talbot, Wales to see Banksy’s work for themselves, which has increased tourism rates for the little community.

Many people consider this work, along with many others, vandalism due to the fact that much of Banksy’s work is done on private property like the sides of businesses or apartment buildings.

Mrs. Dabrowski, however, believes that Banksy should get a free pass and his work shouldn’t be considered vandalism because it isn’t destructive. If anything, he’s making an old dingy wall into something amazing and meaningful.

Because of artists like Banksy, the art world which was once fading away is being revived and brought back into the modern media.  As Banksy once said, “ If you can’t get rid of it, it matters.”