Big Banksy Art Show Coming to Moscow, Allegedly, Unlikely

January 10, 2014 | Marina Galperina

Voice of Russia — the Russian government’s radio broadcasting service — reports that a gigantic Banksy exhibit is coming to Moscow, allegedly. The exhibition of “more than 130 paintings, sculptures, graffiti, collages and videos of the most famous modern incognito artist” isn’t just popping up anywhere but in the grand Manezh Exhibition Centre aka the Moscow Manege, next door to the Red Square and the Kremlin government buildings, allegedly.

The source? Vitaly Borisov, founder of street-art group Letscolors — whose website boasts such artistic achievements as decorating a nursery with spray-painted Disney characters and some street-art-esque stuff inside a gym, ranging from girls writhing in sportswear vaguely reminiscent of Robert Longo’s Men In Cities series to Banksy-ish-like stencils of athletes. Borisov tells Voice of Russia:

I think it will be one of the largest cultural events in Russia and I’m sure that plenty of people not only from Moscow, but from other cities and countries will come to see this exhibition.

Since the announcement is not on Banksy’s official site, but on a government-controlled outlet via source with highly questionable cred — this “exhibition” is either an unauthorized display of 130 “acquired” objects or a complete bullshit rumor. But wait, it gets better. Borisov says:

The phenomenon of Banksy’ popularity, in my opinion, lies in the simplicity and openness of his works. There is always a mix of informative, social and art message in his graffiti, but without the complex implication that often scares the public away.

No “complex implications!” Like clip-art, amirite, Borisov-bro? I’m guessing when Banksy has this imaginary exhibit next door to Kremlin in the middle of a massive social and legislative LGBT Human Rights crisis, the Gay Boobies kissing cops-type art won’t be part of it. Because that would be illegal.