A dad and his daughters, loving life in New York City

Tuesday, December 18

Banksy at Vanina Holasek

You've got to give them credit for trying. Perhaps the world's most famous street-artist, Banksy has long been a personal favorite of mine—I think he's clever and creative, plucky and genuine, and I find his work to be enormously appealing, both in content and visual style—and was thrilled to stumble across a couple of his pieces on the streets of his native London a couple of years ago.

But Banksy on paper, framed behind glass? Banksy for sale... and, by the way, for astonishing amounts of money? In no way do I begrudge the guy his success, but wouldn't his stuff lose all of its impact in a gallery setting? Well, mostly... yes, in fact it does. Not that the Vanina Holasek gallery show isn't worth seeing—even if you're not a fan, there's enough original ideas, well executed, to recommend it—but, maybe more than anything, it certainly did make me re-appreciate the miracle of last December's Wooster on Spring show.


In some ways, the narrow, stand-alone, three-story townhouse of Vanina Holasek is the perfect gallery for such a show, and everyone worked mighty hard to create an atmosphere that at least somewhat evokes (however implausibly) the grit and spontaneity of the street, or a squat. Banksy's mascot rubber rats are everywhere, for example, and there's lots of police tape and paint splatters and the like. Problem is, because they also wanted to sell the stuff, it's not like Banksy could just go in and tag the walls (again, HUGE re-appreciation of the Wooster on Spring show!)

Anyway, there are many of the artist's greatest hits here, most of which I love, all packed into the gallery's three stories, and it was definitely a pleasure to see these pieces "live", even in print form. In the end, I think Banksy and Vanina Holasek did a fine job with an extremely difficult assignment. And even if it doesn't entirely work, well, heck, it's better than nothing.


Banksy Does New York runs through December 29. Vanina Holasek is located at 502 West 27th Street, just off of 10th Avenue. If you can't afford several hundred thousand dollars for a signed piece, they are also selling $50 T-shirts and $55 catalogs. My advice? Get Wall and Piece instead, available in lots of places for under $30. It's written by Banksy and filled with hundreds of great images of his stuff out in the world.

Labels: ,

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Banksy Print - Difaced Ten Pound Notes

Hi All!

I have decided to sell some of my Banksy collection - These are Di-Faced Tenners.

They are in absolutely perfect condition (mint) and they have been stored in an acid free folder in my smoke free home.

I have uploaded photos here :

http://www.flickr.com/photos/banksyfreak/

There is also a video here on Youtube.

The video quality is no the best. Please see the photos for better detail.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPBWnYhnQvk

Feel free to email me - banksyfreak at gmail dot com

I ship with FedEx worldwide.

Payment accepted via PayPal =)

Thanks for your time !

6:49 PM, December 19, 2007

 
Blogger lazysundae said...

Been wanting to check out the WK Interact exhibit in Williamsburg - supposed to be good. Streets of Europe at Jonathan Levine is alright as well, my favorite one was Blu.

4:06 PM, December 21, 2007

 

Post a Comment

<< Home