Banksy's Monet tribute to go on sale for up to £5m


Street artist Banksy’s version of Claude Monet’s impressionist masterpiece will go on sale at Sotheby’s London gallery for an estimated £3-5m.

The painting, called Show me the Monet, was created in 2005. It is framed around Monet’s famous water lilies picture but is filled with jarring images of upside-down shopping trolleys and a traffic cone bobbing in the water.

Sotheby’s will sell the oil-on-canvas work for between £3m and £5m (US$3.9 million to US$6.5m) estimates suggest. It will go on sale at a livestreamed auction in London on 21 October.

The painting will appear for a two-day preview on Friday before it is unveiled in New York and Hong Kong later this month. It will then return to London where it will go on sale.

Show me the Monet was first shown 15 years ago as part of Banksy’s second gallery exhibition in London.

It hails from a series collectively known as the Crude Oils, which include what Banksy has termed “remixes” of canonical artworks. In it, the artist takes and subverts the language of art history to recreate renowned artworks with his own style. Among them, Vincent van Gogh’s Sunflowers portrayed wilting or dead in their vase; Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks augmented by an angry man in Union Jack boxer shorts moments after breaking the bar window with a chair and Andy Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe re-faced with Kate Moss.

Three of Monet’s most spectacular large paintings from this series will also be brought together at the National Gallery in London for the first exhibition of decorative arts by the impressionist painters in September 2021.

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Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s European head of contemporary art, said: “In one of his most important paintings, Banksy has taken Monet’s iconic depiction of the Japanese bridge in the impressionist master’s famous garden at Giverny and transformed it into a modern-day fly-tipping spot. More canal than an idyllic lily pond, Banksy litters Monet’s composition with discarded shopping trollies and a fluorescent orange traffic cone.

“Ever prescient as a voice of protest and social dissent, here Banksy shines a light on society’s disregard for the environment in favour of the wasteful excesses of consumerism.

“Recent years have seen seminal Banksys come to auction, but this is one of his strongest, and most iconic, to appear yet. From Love is in the Bin, to the record-breaking Devolved Parliament, to this take on Monet, October just wouldn’t be complete without a big Banksy moment.”

Last October Banksy’s Devolved Parliament, which depicted MPs in the House of Commons as chimpanzees, sold for £9.9m in what organisers said was a record for the artist.



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