BANKSY (B. 1975) Girl With Ice Cream on Palette 2004

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Lot 5AR
BANKSY
(B. 1975)
Girl With Ice Cream on Palette
2004

Sold for £ 1,102,750 (US$ 1,521,983) inc. premium
BANKSY (B. 1975)
Girl With Ice Cream on Palette
2004

tagged; signed and dedicated on the reverse
spray paint and emulsion on wood

59.7 by 50 cm.
23 1/2 by 19 11/16 in.

This work was executed in 2004.


Footnotes

  • This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity issued by Pest Control Office.

    Provenance
    Private Collection, UK (acquired directly from the artist)
    Gift from the above to the present owner



    As one of the most acclaimed and sensationalist contemporary artists in the world, Banksy's career has garnered a following unlike any other. His political statements and subversive mise-en-scène have adorned cities across the globe at vital junctures in recent history, provoking alternative perspectives and fomenting spectacle and theatre in the art world. Banksy has gained unparalleled acclaim for his iconic and anti-establishment street art that is universally recognisable, and his most definitive and enduring works are fiercely sought after by collectors globally.

    From his emergent years, Banksy associated with the graffiti subcultures that were abundant across European towns and cities in the 1990s, turning to freehand graffiti as a teenager having been inspired by local artists and the French graffiti artist Blek le Rat. He was a renegade and nomadic phantom, spray-painting and tagging trains and walls before turning his hand to stencilling following a close encounter with the police; enabling him to work quickly and avoid apprehension by the authorities. Unlike many of his graffiti counterparts, whose exaggerated script and cartoon characters had become practically conventional in the modern city, Banksy's bold and iconic stencils combined an astute sense of current affairs, transcendent ideas and a stylised technique that has captured audiences and launched him from outsider street artist to one of the most important political and cultural voices of the twenty-first century.

    Girl with Ice Cream on Palette from 2004 is a rare example of Banksy's stencilling style on found material which is not only entirely fresh to the market but also depicts one of the most playful and memorable images from his oeuvre, which first appeared at his major breakthrough exhibition Turf War in 2003. Not one to shy away from dark humour and pointed irony, Banksy takes a subject that evokes the fragility and innocence of childhood: a young girl resplendent in her polka-dot dress, her hair tied in plaits with a bow, gleefully holding an ice cream cone. That the cone contains a fizzing stick of dynamite, however, is Banksy's dramatic punchline and typifies the flavour of his humour; a poignant reflection by the artist on the inevitable disillusionment that accompanies ageing and possible hopes for the future. In common with many of Banksy's most successful works, Girl with Ice Cream on Palette intends to shock, yet it also aims to engender thought provoking discourse within a broader socio-political context.

    Banksy has repeatedly returned to the motif of childhood in his work, most notably in his Girl with Balloon, that appeared on walls in London for the first time in 2002 and was later used in support of social media campaigns such as 'Stand with Syria' in 2014. These images represent a powerful symbol of lost innocence, Banksy reportedly having remarked that parents would do anything for children these days except from letting them be themselves. His deployment of satire as a tool for social commentary is always as funny as it is affecting, and his works bring into question the principles of a culture whose power structures will leave much in the way of financial, environmental, and social reparations to a younger generation. He explores this notion further in his Jack and Jill edition print of 2005. The carefree smiles of the children and their easily distinguishable childhood attire are juxtaposed with the bulletproof police vests that encase their slight frames; a sardonic meditation by Banksy on the internalisation of discipline and the stolen innocence of youth, perhaps evocative of Foucault's theory of the internalisation of discipline.

    Banksy has solidified his position as one of the most well recognised and sought after street artists of the century having completely transformed graffiti culture. His identity, even after more than twenty years, still remains delightedly anonymous.
Contacts
BANKSY (B. 1975) Girl With Ice Cream on Palette 2004
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