Banksy's Graffiti Wars on the Canal


Images from the Times

Last week Banksy, the successful graffiti artist turned millionaire and darling of art collectors, popped up with 4 new murals on the Regent's Canal in London. One was a hard hitting graphic protest against global warming. But he also had three other pieces along the same route; one a picture of a man painting over some graffiti and another of a rat and another of a boy fishing.

It turns out Banksy's graffiti clean up picture was really cleaning up his rival King Robbo. In a terrible breach of graffiti etiquette, Banksy had covered up another artist's work. The empire strikes back and King Robbo has now covered up Banksy's with 3 foot high silver letters spelling his name. Follow the fight after the fold.

Here's the original mural by King Robbo. It was accessible only by water, and had been in place since 1985.

Here's Banksy's cover-up job of King Robbo's original. Although Robbo had been "in retirement", with no new work seen for years, he surfaced to create the new work, out of revenge on his old rival.

As one graffiti aficionado, wrote about the destruction of a piece of street art history: "Now I like Banksy's stuff and I like this but the cost is too high. Fair enough over the years this piece got pretty dogged and 'vandalized' but for the most part it was still visible history... long live King Robbo."

This one is still untouched.

Tags: Artists