Last year, gallery owner Stephan Kezsler had slabs of concrete with Banksy’s stencils chiseled out of walls in Palestine and shipped to his gallery. He then attempted to sell these well-known pieces from Banksy’s 2007 West Bank Santa’s Ghetto project for $40,000 to $750,000. Banksy send out a Pest Control alert to aforementioned shittiness — “We have warned Mr. Keszler of the serious implications of selling unauthenticated works but he seems not to care. We have no doubt that these works will come back to haunt Mr. Keszler.” Sell they did not.
Now, Kezsler attempts to profit form his opulent poaching by plopping Wet Dog and Stop and Search on view at the CONTEXT Art Fair in Miami. Want to pay $10-$20 admission fee to see the pieces he gutted out of the Bethlehem landscape? Isn’t the fact that he calls this “Banksy Out of CONTEXT” just gut-wrenchengly awkward?
There is something amusing about the amount of hype and hoopla around protecting Banksy’s stencils in London, but there’s something particularly low in Kezsler’s smugness about Banksy’s attempts to stop this sad display:
“We do not need his permission to do what he wants, because it’s not owned by him. It’s made by him.”
And this hole was made by you, buddy: