Wonder how many people simply walked by the street art stall set up by Banksy on Saturday in New York's Central Park. One would guess the number to have registered in the thousands, if not the tens of thousands. And in the end, as was reported by Yahoo News Oct. 14, only seven original Banksy pieces were sold. Now one has to wonder how many people are kicking themselves for not buying a Banksy painting.
Still, it wasn't as if anyone knew the paintings were really by the renowned British street artist. No one has ever seen him. It is part of his allure, his mystique. And even though each of the paintings was signed by the artist, many undoubtedly shrugged them off as knock-offs.
For those few who bought an original Banksy... well, you can take your little investment to the bank. Banksy took to his website on Sunday to note that he had set up a stall of original spray artwork, selling each piece for $60. He also noted that the sale was a one-off, that Saturday's little exhibit and entrepreneurial venture would not occur again on Sunday.
The Sydney Morning Herald estimated the artwork sold was worth 233,200 to 339,200 Australian dollars ($221,000 to $322,000.) The paintings that people strolled past all day were worth an estimated $1.59 million.
There were only three purchases all day. A total of seven paintings were sold. One buyer made out with the lion's share, though, when they purchased four paintings, saying they needed "something for the walls" of his Chicago home. Another buyer, a New Zealand woman, successfully haggled with the vendor hired by Banksy to mind his wares in order to make a two-for-one purchase. (That's correct: She got two original Banksy paintings for the price of one -- $60).
Banksy is currently in New York City conducting his "live exhibition," a month-long artistic expose called "Better Out Than In: An Artist Residency on the Streets of New York." He has promised to produce at least one original piece of art each day throughout the month.
The $60 spray art sale was just the latest of Banksy's artistic stunts. Days ago, he unleashed "Sirens Of The Lambs," a slaughterhouse truck with stuffed animal sheep peering -- and bleating plaintively -- out of the slatted cargo area.
Comedian Stephen Colbert even "forbid" Banksy to come to his studio and paint the wall of the building. He noted that the "last thing" he wanted was for Banksy to "vandalize" his building and cause the property value to "skyrocket" (Banksy tagged walls are usually torn down and sold at auction, generating as much as $1.1 million). "The Colbert Report" host also forbid the as yet unidentified artist to paint in a designated area, then told the artist not to use paints set out on the sidewalk.
Thus far, Banksy has yet to take the challenge...