A Banksy mural given to a community for free is going up for auction and is set to fetch up to £450,000, after it was taken from its location on the side of a Poundland in Wood Green, London last year.
The US-based Fine Art Auctions has listed what appears to be the mural, which shows a young boy hunched over a sewing machine making Union Jack bunting . The drawing was believed to be a shot at the use of cheap sweat shops to make bunting for the Jubilee decorations last year, and has turned up mysteriously for auction. Speaking to The Sun, Fine Art’s Frederic Thut wouldn’t reveal the identity of the collector, though he said it was “well-known”. He added “The collector signed a contract saying everything was above board. If he has lied to us it is important to know. But I don’t think he lies to us.”
Wood Green councillor Alan Strickland said, meanwhile: “Banksy gave our community that painting for free. Someone has taken it and plans to make a huge amount for themselves, which is disgusting and counter to the spirit in which it was given. No doubt Banksy will be horrified.” Banksy may well be horrified, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to stop whoever took the piece making a hefty profit. It’s listed for £250,000 on the site, though it’s likely to go for almost double.