5 Year Print Market Review 2023
Tortoise Helmet - Signed Mixed Media by Banksy 2009 - MyArtBroker

Tortoise Helmet
Signed Mixed Media

Banksy

This estimate blends recent public auction records with our own private sale data and network demand.

Mixed Media, 2009
Signed Mixed Media Edition of 5

Joe Syer

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Joe Syer, Head of Urban & Contemporary Art

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Auction Results

Auction DateAuction HouseArtwork
Hammer Price
Return to Seller
Buyer Paid
July 2021Sotheby's Online - United KingdomTortoise Helmet - Signed Mixed Media

Meaning & Analysis

Tortoises carry connotations of wisdom, knowledge and age meaning that this image can be interpreted in various different ways, as in the case with many of Banksy’s intentionally ambiguous spray paints. The fact that the tortoise’s shell, the part of its body which acts as a mobile home and a means of defence, is replaced by a helmet could be a commentary on homelessness or the housing crisis that is plaguing the United Kingdom following the financial crash of 2007.

Many of Banksy’s artworks carry a political message and reflect the artist’s anti-establishment values and disdain for wealth, greed and capitalism. Banksy’s spray paints seem witty on first view, but when thought about in more depth, it is apparent that they often bear strong political critiques and act as a critical analysis of society’s socio-economic landscape.

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