Banksy spends $50K on security guard, rent for latest art piece

Enigmatic British street artist Banksy shelled out $50,000 one of his latest New York City pieces.
Posted By Kate Stanton   |   Oct. 20, 2013 at 8:01 PM   |   Comments

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(UPI) -- Banksy has made quite a splash on the streets of New York since he began his month-long residency there in earlier this month. He's stenciled the Twin Towers on a street wall, sold his artwork for $60 apiece in Central Park, put up a statue of Ronald McDonald getting his shoes shined and filled a slaughterhouse truck with stuffed toy lambs.

In one of his latest works, the secretive British graffiti artist paid a local developer $50,000 to hang to of his paintings underneath an overpass in Chelsea.

According to The New York Post, the developer then paid a security guard to protect the piece.

“This is a private exhibit. There is zero tolerance. If you act up, we will close the gates and that’s that,” the guard told a group of Banksy fans. “You guys come in small groups. You get five minutes and then we rotate. Everybody gets a fair chance to go in and see the piece. No alcohol no dogs and if you guys behave yourselves we’ll be good to go."

The two paintings show black-and-white soldiers next to protestors and a woman in a burqa wearing colorful clothing.

"Are you the sort of person who enjoys going to art galleries, but wished they had more gravel in them? Then this temporary exhibition space is for you," Banksy says in text accompanying the paintings. "Housing just two paintings but also featuring a bench, some carpet and complimentary refreshments. Opens today through Sunday 11 a.m. til midnight."

Though Gothamist noted that owners of other properties used by Banksy have considered security, it's unclear whether the artist intentionally hired security guards as part of the spectacle.

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