The most valuable collection of Banksy is now in Berlin

The work of the world’s most famous – or most notorious – street art artist curated by Steve Lazarides is now in Berlin after Istanbul, Amsterdam and Antwerp.

THE ART OF BANKSY exhibition consists of key artworks that mark the prolific street artist’s colorful climb to fame. Original canvasses, paintings, sculptures and interactive storytelling let’s you experience the poignant periods of Banksy’s career.

The pieces, coming from the curator Steve Lazarides’s own collection and other private collectors from around the world, are all original works and limited edition screen prints by Banksy himself, which are all unique in their form. It’s the most valuable Banksy collection in the world with a worth of 20 million GBP.

Lazarides has selected a couple of the artist’s most talked about and topical artworks, including the iconic ‘Girl with Balloon’, ‘Kate Moss’ and ‘Flower Thrower’ pieces which are regarded as key works in his oeuvre. ‘We are also showing a selection of photos that place the work in the right context,’ says Lazarides. ‘I took them myself during the collaboration with Banksy and they have never been shown before.’  The exhibition will present also one of Banksy’s largest piece “Forgive Us Our Trespassing!” for the first time in Europe in the Berlin exhibition.

What the exhibition does not do is reveal who or what Banksy is. Is he a lone artist? Is it a collective? These are questions that have intrigued the art world since the early 1990s. How does the British Banksy manage to pop up all over the world and rock the establishment with the humorous, politically slanted and sometimes provocative works he places in public spaces? Generally by using stencils to spray images and messages on walls (including the Palestinian side of the dividing wall with Israel), but also by hanging his own works in museums under the curators’ noses, as he did in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the British Museum in London.

“This exhibition is a one off – never will you be able to see this amount of work in one place again. Once the show is over, the artwork will dissipate back to the other 40 collectors around the world, and the likelihood of them being brought together again in the future is very slim.” – Steve Lazarides