Art Thieves Make off with Banksy and Building

BanksywallLast November, I posted about a door in Liverpool featuring one of street artist Banksy’s famous stencil pieces that had to be put under lock and key after a group of men posing as workmen tried to pry the door from its hinges in an attempt to steal the sought-after artist.

Well, it appears another group of thieves succeeded in prying one of the stencil works from a wall in Gloucester Gardens, Paddington:

"Vandals using an angle grinder have cut out the entire section of wall and put the painting, bricks and all, up for sale on auction website eBay for £20,000. Resident Marion Lau-Mackaay said: "For the sake of a few thousand pounds, someone has removed a much-loved part of the wall. ‘My six-year-old son loved it so much he did a painting of it after he heard it had gone and sent it to Banksy with a letter saying, I hopes this makes you feel better’.’ David Hopwood, another resident on the street, said: ‘I complained to the police but they said as it wasn’t a robbery or an assault, they couldn’t help. Westminster council was disinterested.’ Although the rat of Gloucester Gardens was painted during the early days of Banksy’s career, the Bristol-born artist was so fond of it that he included it in his bestselling art book Wall And Piece. Following a string of complaints to eBay, the section of wall has been removed from the site."

Funny how value suddenly creates an incentive for people to start cleaning up graffiti.

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Banksy and Warhol: They’re a Steal [tr]
Banksy for Sale, Banksy for Free [tr]