Who didn't come to the Mánes Gallery last weekend to see the exhibition of the world-famous yet unknown sprayer Bansky, might as well not exist. The artist himself, though, hasn't been there yet. But the organizers believe that he'll arrive. He is said to always appear anonymously at similar exhibitions of his works around the world. Derya Evren, the organizer of the exhibition called "The World of Banksy", even claims to know what the artist looks like, so when he does arrive, he'll recognize him.
Banksy is the pseudonym of an English streetart artist from the Bristol underground scene, whose identity is unknown. Although there are about three different theories of who he could be, none of them has ever been confirmed, and so the identity of this artist is still shrouded by a mysterious veil.
"I think I'd recognize him,"
boldly claims the man who put the show together, Derya Evren - and he refuses to leave Mánes until Bansky arrives. Let's wish him luck, because if that really happened, Prague would go down in history as the place where Banksy's real face was revealed.
Authentic works worth millions
His face might be a mystery, but his paintings are famous all over the world and the prices of his work go up to millions of crowns. The exhibition shows replicas of his most famous artworks, which have been discovered on walls all over the world. In the second part of the exhibition, one can see the most famous prints loaned from private collections. According to the organizers, there are authentic works from Banksy himself among them, but for security reasons they refuse to reveal which those are.
The exhibition takes place simultaneously in Barcelona and Paris.
You can take Banksy home
There's pretty much everything from Banksy you can think of. A paraphrase of the movie Pulp Fiction, where two gangsters, portrayed by John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson, hold bananas in their hands instead of weapons, the famous photograph of a crying Vietnamese girl who's been hit by a dose of napalm and ripped off her clothes fitted between two Disney characters, a native tribe with spears on the hunt for shopping carts, a protester throwing a bouquet of flowers instead of a Molotov, a couple of kissing cops, a little girl reaching up towards a red balloon carried away by the wind, a maid sweeping the dirt behind a curtain, figures of rats and monkeys.
"I'm excited. I admire Banksy for his originality and wit. I've been on several streetart walks around the world and I've seen a few of his works with my own eyes,"
one of the visitors of the exhibition said to LP-life.cz. Like many others, she's taking home a poster with one of his motifs, which can be bought on site for 190 crowns.
In order to allow the visitors to fully sense the spirit of streetart, the exhibition wants to offer a different experience with free graffiti art, Banksy's critical approach and the innovative approach of young artists. "The World of Banksy" brings a different perspective on the issue of Banksy's unknown identity through the concept of the street, which is the basis of existential struggle in the streets and everyday atmosphere. The exhibition is important also thanks to the fact that it represents the first introduction of this artist in Prague. It will run until September 27.