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24 June 2011 | By: M@

Banksy Camden Town Work Covered Up

Banksy Camden Town Work Covered Up

Within hours of appearing on the corner of Kentish Town Road and Jeffrey's Street, the new Banksy mural has been covered over with perspex sheeting. Why's this of interest? It perfectly symbolises the ongoing debate about double standards in dealing with graffiti. Both Banksy and Tox leave their handiwork on private property. But while Banksy sees his efforts preserved behind a protective screen, Tox is convicted of criminal damage.

We all have views about the relative merits and motives of the pair, but should the authorities be allowed to make a distinction? (To be fair, we don't know if the perspex screen, in this case, was erected by the council or agents of the property's freeholder. But the point stands.)

It was also interesting to note how many people (Londonist included) were taking photos of the new work. We loitered around for about 10 minutes on Friday lunchtime and counted an average of four photographs per minute.


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Mat Beal

Seems to be standard practice now whenever a new Banksy appears (the Keith Haring one off Grange Road in Bermondsey is similarly protected). I'd assume it's the owners of the property and not the council?

John Grady

You have answered your own question there. If it was done within hours (rather than months or years), then there is no way that the council did it...


Watching the quality of the work being done I doubt this was being done by the council (in any case Camden would take months to drag its sorry ass around to doing anything). Done by the owner.


Point well made it's a complete double standard.
They are both for want of a better term art vandals while one is celebrated the
other is facing a prison sentence.

Sharon Harris

A similar debate is going on in Vancouver this week.

The Citizen Wall, some plywood boards on which people wrote messages of healing for the city after the hockey riot, will be shown in a museum. Of course, no one dares call it graffiti. It's now "a shrine." But it was started by one person who illegally wrote on property which belonged to someone else.

Then, a graffiti artist sprayed a large piece that said, "I love you," on top of some of the messages on one of the panels. No one knows who did it, but I pretty much got blamed in a television newscast. I've received hate mail and have been insulted and blamed online. I live in Toronto and collect "I love you" graffiti photographs from around the world, so I must have done it, right?

Anyway, I've written about it here: http://www.theiloveyoublog.com.... I hope this isn't too Spammy.

Thank you for covering this, Londonist!

Former Torontoist writer,

Sharon Harris

Mike Grady

I was walking past when the screen was being put up - certainly didn't look like council folk. 

Christopher Price

shame as it goes completely against the impermanence inherent in the whole thing. loses its fire.