£50,000-£70,000 VALUE (EST.)
$90,000-$130,000 VALUE (EST.)
$80,000-$120,000 VALUE (EST.)
¥420,000-¥590,000 VALUE (EST.)
€60,000-€80,000 VALUE (EST.)
$480,000-$670,000 VALUE (EST.)
¥8,070,000-¥11,300,000 VALUE (EST.)
$60,000-$90,000 VALUE (EST.)
This estimate blends recent public auction records with our own private sale data and network demand.
Signed Print Edition of 150
H 100cm x W 50cm
Own this artwork?
Joe Syer, Head of Urban & Contemporary Art
|Auction Date||Auction House||Artwork|
Return to Seller
|March 2021||Forum Auctions London - United Kingdom||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|May 2020||Forum Auctions London - United Kingdom||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|March 2020||Forum Auctions London - United Kingdom||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|September 2018||Christie's London - United Kingdom||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|December 2017||Bonhams New York - United States||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|June 2016||Bonhams New Bond Street - United Kingdom||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
|January 2016||Julien's Auctions - United States||Flying Copper - Signed Print|
Flying Copper is a 2003 screen print by Banksy featuring his smiley face motif, released in a signed edition of 150. Showing an armed British policeman in complete riot gear with an acid-house smiley face pasted over his own, the prints bear a coded, rebellious message.
Flying Copper is one of Banksy’s earliest and most iconic images known around the world. The print shows an armed British policeman in complete riot gear: machine gun, walkie-talkie, cuffs, helmet – with an insertion of a disarming ‘smiley face’ (synonymous with Britain’s ‘90s rave culture) and a pair of sprayed angel wings. The background is a block of bright, sky blue.
This print is a quintessential example of Banksy’s style featuring contrasting aesthetics - photo-realistic stencils combined with graphic features demonstrates the vast disparity between what we associate with the ‘smiley face’ (happiness), and what we associate with riot gear (fear and intimidation). The little angel wings on the policeman’s back accentuate an amusing juxtaposition between morality, truth, military control and intimidation. It is usual for Banksy to remind us to be sceptical and wary of authority figures abusing power and the police have been a frequent target of his critiques, such as in other works like Donuts, Chocolate and most famously Rude Copper.
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