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Banksy artworks from Robbie Williams collection to debut at auction

Banksy’s Girl With Balloon has a price estimate of £2 million to £3 million (Joshua White/Sotheby’s/PA)
Banksy’s Girl With Balloon has a price estimate of £2 million to £3 million (Joshua White/Sotheby’s/PA)

Three of Banksy’s most recognisable artworks from Robbie Williams’s collection will make their auction debut this spring.

The pieces – Girl With Balloon, Kissing Coppers and Vandalised Oils (Choppers) – will be up for sale in the first edition of Sotheby’s The Now Evening Auction in London on March 2.

The artworks by anonymous street artist Banksy, who hails from Bristol, are estimated to be worth millions of pounds each.

Banksy’s Girl With Balloon (Joshua White/Sotheby’s/PA)

The classic pop art image of Girl With Balloon first made its debut under Waterloo Bridge in 2002 and it once again made headlines in 2018 after it partially self-destructed at the conclusion of a Sotheby’s auction in which it had been sold for £1.1 million.

The new partially shredded artwork became Love Is In The Bin and went under the hammer for £18,582,000 in October 2021, which the auction house cited as a record fee for the street artist.

Williams’s Girl With Balloon (2006) is depicted on metal and is the first of its kind to appear at auction, Sotheby’s have said, starting with a price estimate of £2 million to £3 million.

Kissing Coppers, which depicts two British policemen in a passionate embrace, was first unveiled on the exterior of The Prince Albert Pub in Brighton in 2004.

But the original mural was removed in 2014 after being repeatedly vandalised.

Kissing Coppers by Banksy (Joshua White/Sotheby’s/PA)

Williams’s version of the artwork from 2005, which is estimated at £2.5 million to £3.5 million, is the first time a Kissing Coppers painting on canvas has been offered on the secondary market, Sotheby’s said.

The third Banksy piece in the collection is Vandalised Oils (Choppers) from 2005, and features two armed military helicopters disrupting a serene pastoral landscape.

The artwork, which hails from the artist’s Vandalised Oils series which sees graffiti on top of classical oil paintings, has an estimated price tag of £2.5 million to £3.5 million.

Speaking of the artworks, the singer and former member of Take That Williams said: “I remember seeing Girl With Balloon, Vandalised Oils (Choppers) and Kissing Coppers for the first time.

“I believe they are some of his best paintings and I love how closely linked they are to the street pieces.

“As a collector of Banksy’s work, you become part of a broader cultural movement.”

Banksy’s Vandalised Oils (Choppers) (Joshua White/Sotheby’s/PA)

Hugo Cobb, head of The Now Evening Auction at Sotheby’s London, said: “These works unite the cultural legacies of two of Britain’s biggest stars: Robbie Williams and Banksy.

“Like their creator, and like their owner, they are acerbic, iconic, irreverent, and unique.”

The Now Evening Auction aims to platform artworks executed in the last 20 years by the most cutting-edge artists of today and tomorrow, Sotheby’s has said.

The three paintings will first go on exhibition in Sotheby’s New York galleries from January 22 for a six-day preview.

They will then embark on a global tour to Hong Kong from February 8 to 9 and then London for its final public view from February 22 until March 2.

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