Exhibition rejects artwork submitted anonymously by Banksy
In the quintessentially cheeky Banksy style, the legendary street artist recently submitted a piece to the Royal Academy’s summer exhibition under the pseudonym Bryan S Gaakman which was rejected. Once he revealed his identity, the piece was accepted into the exhibit and is now priced at Â£ 350million in exhibit materials.
Writing on Instagram, Banksy explained what happened when he tried to submit something as an unknown artist: âI entered an early version of this in the RA summer exhibition under the pseudonym of Bryan S Gaakman – an anagram of “Banksy’s anagram”. It was refused. . Then a month later I got a letter from coordinator Grayson Perry asking me to submit something, so I sent it back. It is now hung in gallery 3. “
The summer exhibition, co-created by contemporary artist Grayson Perry, is known as the world’s largest exhibition open for public submissions. Along with this year’s theme of ‘democratic violence and tumble’, Banksy’s play remixed the ‘Vote to Leave’ poster for the June 2016 referendum on the European Union, with a heart balloon covering the letters so that it reads “Vote to Love”. After his piece was initially rejected, the show contacted Banksy for a submission, and the original piece was accepted.
In A declaration to the New York Times, however, the Academy claims that the piece “currently in the summer exhibition is different from the original version submitted”.
The Â£ 350million price tag is likely a reference to the Vote Leave campaign’s retracted claim that Â£ 350million would go to the National Health Service if the UK left the EU.
History is less of a snare moment for the Academy and more of a reminder that when it comes to commodified art, context is always key.
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