A man from Liverpool claims to have found (and taken) a new Banksy artwork.
Darren Gee uploaded footage of the artwork he attributes to Banksy after removing it from a wall on Wednesday night.
The wall the artwork was removed from is situated opposite Liverpool’s Walker Art Gallery. The artwork features a monkey holding a paintbrush and wearing a sandwich board, on which a sign reads ‘The Streets Are My Gallery!’
The artwork is in Banksy’s trademark stencil-style, and Gee shows on the back of the mural ‘Banksy’ stencils of the artists name “where the glue was”. But crucially, there has been no word from the artist himself (Banksy usually posts his new artworks on social media to prevent copycats, and there has been no sign of the new artwork there), or any authentication from his handlers Pest Control.
Gee has requested authentication of the artwork but believes it is genuine, saying: “He put it right facing Liverpool’s art gallery, stashed, glued onto the wall hidden, and my little eyes found it.” Gee added, “I’m hoping and praying to God that it’s a genuine article because if it is it’s a life-changer.”
It is thought the removal of the artwork has been reported to Merseyside police.
Banksy has many imitators, and the number of fakes increase year on year. Banksy himself has previously revealed that millions of pounds worth of art attributed to him is fake. This is why it is so important for any suspected Banksy artwork to be authenticated as the art market has become much more discerning in recent years, and fake Banksy’s are very easily rooted out if they are attempting to be sold without authentication.
If this turns out to be a genuine Banksy it would not be his first gift to the city of Liverpool. Banksy has also gifted the city with works including a skywriter plane painting a heart-shaped trail dubbed, Love Plane, which was daubed on the wall of a car park; and Liverpool Rat, which was painted outside a derelict pub.
The Liverpool Echo contacted Banksy’s representatives for comment. We wait to see if Gee’s find is the genuine article, or, if Pest Control does not authenticate it, we will have to assume it is just another fake.