Banksy pays homage to Basquiat with two new London Murals

The surreptitious street artist has painted two new street pieces to coincide with ‘Boom for Real’, the major Jean-Michel Basquiat retrospective that opened at the Barbican this week.


The stenciled works appeared over night in an underpass near the Barbican Centre, with the artist describing the pieces as an "(unofficial) collaboration".


On his official Instagram account, Banksy wrote alongside the image of a Ferris wheel bearing Basquiat's signature crown motif: "Major new Basquiat show opens at the Barbican - a place that is normally very keen to clean any graffiti from its walls."


The second mural depicts a self-portrait that Basquiat painting in 1982 getting unceremoniously frisked by Met Police. It bears the caption: "Portrait of Basquiat being welcomed by the Metropolitan Police - an (unofficial) collaboration with the new Basquiat show."


The painting features a mix of stencil, free-hand spray paint and oil pastel and can be viewed as a comment on the stop and search tactics employed by London police that disproportionately targets black men. Perhaps observing how the artist would be treated if he was working today.


‘Boom for Real’ is the first major Basquiat exhibition to be held in the UK, presenting over 100 of the artist’s works alongside personal artifacts and ephemera.


In other Banksy related news, his new painting ‘Civilian Drone Strike’ raised £205,000 in auction last week with all money being donated to human rights charity Reprieve and Campaign Against Arms Trade.


Meanwhile, a selection of five original street pieces by the artist painted in Liverpool were sold this week to a Qatari buyer for £3.2m.


The collection, which included an iconic rat that stood at over 40ft tall and ‘love plane’, was auction privately with the winner bidder deciding to remain anonymous.


We currently have a number of rare Banksy editions available through the gallery. For sales enquiries please contact the gallery on +44 (0) 20 7240 7909 or email us at

September 22, 2017