Banksy copycat graffiti flood UK
Copycat Banksy’s are cropping up all over the place. We reported last month that Just weeks after a Banksy artwork had been identified in Liverpool’s city centre, Liverpudlians were once again titillated by the prospect of having another. At first glance, the black-and-white image of a slouching man in a hoodie and tracksuit bottoms, trailing a plug, seemed to bear all the hallmarks of the street artist’s signature style but we now know the work is by an artist working in Banksy’s style. Over Christmas in Hunstanton Norfolk, a sunbathing rat appeared and many locals thought it was a new work by Banksy. As everyone familiar with the Bristol born artist knows, rats often feature in his many murals.
Liz Falconbridge, an arts and education manager at King’s Lynn Arts Centre, said: “My considered view is that it probably isn’t Banksy – as it’s too tame and not edgy enough”.
The graphic style is also different, though of course this could all be part of the ruse. The latest work to materialise is in Kentish Town North London, it has all of the hallmarks of a work by the master graffiti king, with its imagery depicting a toddler with a lollypop pulling an air to surface missile, contained in a kiddie wagon. Many experts have now denied its approval as a Banksy and the work has not appeared on the Banksy official website.
So who is this copycat? Is it someone with a mission of undermining the work of the master? All three pieces are similar in style and content and most likely by the same hand.
Banksy’s work typically includes satirical social and political commentary, and ranges from murals to sculpture and installation, often playing with the contextual aspects of the work. He also recently designed a 3 dimensional adaptation of a Monopoly Board with Mr Moneybags portrayed as a down and out panhandler. There are large scale models of playing pieces, including a sports car (to represent bankers) and a red plastic house with a Tox tag sprayed onto it. This is a reference to the jailed London Graffiti artist TOX and also a visual play on the toxic morgages that kick started the current recession. The work of art is has already become a tourist attraction. The elusive Banksy has also been pushing his work in the direction of text art, as two new works appear at Canary Wharf, a stones throw away from many of the multinational banks. ‘Sorry! The lifestyle you ordered is currently out of stock’ is a text narrative which pokes fun at the ‘high living Wharf Culture’ and how it can go terribly wrong. The other states, “You don’t need planning permission to build castles in the sky” (via)