I Fought The Law by Banksy

I Fought The Law Banksy

Find out more about Banksy’s ‘I Fought The Law’ series, browse prints & editions for sale & view the works wanted by active buyers right now.

I Fought the Law is an early Banksy screen print that was released in 2004 by Pictures on Walls of London as an edition of just 150 I Fought The Law signed prints and 500 unsigned prints. Banksy also created 32 artist’s proofs, eight each of the four colours: orange, pink, yellow and red.

I Fought the Law is based on actual video footage of John Hinckley’s 1981 failed assassination attempt on U.S. President Ronald Reagan and is a three-colour screen print depicting five black and white stencilled figures.

In a violent struggle, one man is being pinned down by three other men, whilst a fourth onlooker watches the scene from the right. The man on the ground has dropped a paintbrush, with which he has just scrawled the words ‘I Fought The Law And I Won’ in bright orange paint on the wall behind.

The four characters on the left depict the members of President Reagan’s private security team tackling John Hinckley, a delusional schizophrenic who fired five bullets at President Reagan on 30 March 1981. But with true Banksy irony, the criminal in I Fought the Law is a graffiti artist, instead of a killer.

The text references the title of the song I Fought The Law (and The Law Won) by The Clash from 1979. A second instance of the British rock band’s influence on Banksy’s work can also be seen in his graffiti tag portraying a punk smashing an office chair, appropriating the cover artwork from their 1979 album, London Calling.

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