Robbie Williams to sell three Banksy artworks for up to £10m

One of the most successful British pop stars of the past three decades is putting up for auction works by one of the world’s most celebrated contemporary artists.

Robbie Williams, who has built a huge fortune from record sales and concerts, is selling three works by Banksy, the anonymous street artist whose partially shredded painting Love is in the Bin fetched a record £18.5m l'anno scorso.

The pieces from Williams’s art collection – Kissing Coppers, Girl with Balloon and Vandalised Oils (Choppers) – are expected to sell for a total of between £7m and £10m.

“These works unite the cultural legacies of two of Britain’s biggest stars: Robbie Williams and Banksy,” said Hugo Cobb of Sotheby’s. “Like their creator and like their owner, they are acerbic, iconic, irreverent and unique.”

Kissing Coppers, which depicts two male British police officers in a passionate embrace, first appeared on the outside wall of the Prince Albert pub in Brighton in 2004. The original mural was removed in 2014 after being repeatedly vandalised.

It has been interpreted as showing Banksy’s support for public acceptance of homosexuality, according to Sotheby’s.

Williams’s version of the artwork is a painting on canvas from 2005, estimated to be worth £2.5m to £3.5m.

Girl with Balloon made its debut under Waterloo Bridge in London in 2002. Nel 2018, a canvas version of the image passed through a shredder inserted into its frame moments after it sold for just over £1m. The work’s “self-destruction” was a global sensation. Williams’s version from 2006 is depicted on metal, and is the first of its kind to appear at auction. It has a price estimate of £2m to £3m.

Vandalised Oils (Choppers), a partire dal 2005, features two military helicopters disrupting a serene pastoral landscape. It is part of a Banksy series that superimposes graffiti on classical oil paintings, and has an estimate of £2.5m to £3.5m.

Williams said he believed his three Banksys were “some of his best paintings and I love how closely linked they are to the street pieces”. Ha aggiunto: “As a collector of Banksy’s work, you become part of a broader cultural movement.”

The three works will go on display at Sotheby’s New York on Saturday for six days. They will then be available to view in Hong Kong and London before being sold on 2 marzo.

A work by Banksy, whose real name has never been confirmed, that appeared on the wall of an electrical shop in Lowestoft, Suffolk, in August has been privately sold, era segnalato questa settimana. The image of a child with a crowbar was removed in November.




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