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Banksy says London auction of works nothing to do with him

Source: Reuters - Thu, 24 Apr 2014 21:04 GMT
Author: Reuters
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LONDON, April 24 (Reuters) - The reclusive British street artist Banksy has disassociated himself from an exhibition of his urban art murals that have been removed from walls and are to be auctioned off in London.

Among the seven works said to be included in the sale organised by the Sincura Group are "Berlin Door", "No Ball Games", "Liverpool Rat" and "Girl With Balloon".

In a statement posted on www.banksy.co.uk, the artist, who has kept his identity a closely guarded secret and often paints his wall murals in the dead of night, said he had no connection with the sale.

"The 'Stealing Banksy' exhibition in London this weekend has been organised without the involvement or consent of the artist. Banksy would like to make it clear - This show has got nothing to do with me and I think it's disgusting people are allowed to go around displaying art on walls without getting permission," the statement said.

The exhibition and sale have been organised by the Sincura Group, which is charging admission to see the works and says an auction using online and sealed bids will conclude on Sunday.

Tony Baxter, the director of Sincura Group, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Banksy's works have been commanding higher prices as he has become better known to collectors in the United States and in continental Europe.

At a recent event in London held by an art exchange that allows investors to buys shares in works of art, one of the most sought-after pieces was a stenciled painting on canvas by Banksy called "Heavy Artillery" that features an elephant weighed down by a missile strapped to its back.

Its 1,000 shares were listed at 120 pounds ($200) each. (Reporting by Michael Roddy; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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