Want To Buy The Turnpike Lane Banksy for $400k?


Where the Banksy was; photo by Richard McKeever

The “slave labour” Banksy that appeared on Whymark Avenue, near Turnpike Lane tube, in May last year has been removed from the building, sold and is up for auction in Miami.

Harringay Online user AntK had suspicions that something was afoot as long ago as last Wednesday when the Banksy was covered with tarpaulin, surrounded by scaffolding and guarded by a security van. By Saturday it was gone — not exactly a top notch job as you can see above.

Local residents have been sharing their dismay over the loss of this street art on local forums, not just Harringay Online but noelparknet.com and Bowes & Bounds Connected. What’s striking is how much affection local people have for the piece. Turnpike Lane doesn’t often make the news and the artwork brought a boost to the area. Wood Green people felt they had a stake in it — that it was their Banksy. Indeed, Haringey Council even included it as a tourist attraction in their Olympic guide to the borough.

Local councillor Alan Strickland has launched a campaign encouraging people to email the auction house in Miami requesting the art work be removed from sale, and people have emailed Banksy himself. However, it seems doubtful that much can be done to prevent the sale or restore it to Whymark Avenue.

But perhaps other pieces can appear in its place. One Bowes & Bounds Connected user comments, “I wouldn’t be surprised if another mural appeared on that wall now — from irate members of the public”. If Banksy ever comes back to Wood Green, perhaps he’ll be kind enough to pick a public building for his next work.

The Banksy is due to go under the hammer on 23 February. 


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  • http://twitter.com/sparticus Mark Walley

    Presumably it was the owners of the building who sold it right? Only I understand there have been issues about who legally owns the art.

  • Willo

    Not trying to split hairs but the area is actually called Wood Green

    • http://londonist.com/ Lindsey Clarke

      That is true. Tis up the Turnpike Lane tube end though.

  • http://londonist.com/ Lindsey Clarke

    Oh dear, I just got this press release from Paddy Power:



    (18 February 2013) Paddy Power have today opened the betting on how much a Banksy painting will sell for after it was put up for auction on an American website.

    The work, which was removed from the side of a Poundland shop in North London, is a 10/11 shot to sell for between $500,000 and $750,000 by the bookmaker with $750,000 to $1,000,000 considered the next most likely region at 5/2.

    Elsewhere, Paddy Power are also offering odds of 8/1 on the acclaimed graffiti artist revealing his identity in 2013 while it’s 9/2 for the piece to be returned to its original Wood Green site.

    Banksy Jubilee Art

    What will the Banksy Slave Labour (Bunting Boy) sell for?

    11/2 Less than $500,000

    10/11 $500,000 to $750,000

    5/2 $750,000 to $1,000,000

    4/1 More than $1 million

    Banksy Specials

    8/1 Banksy to reveal his identity in 2013

    Will the Banksy Jubilee artwork be returned to Wood Green in 2013?

    9/2 Yes

    1/8 No

  • http://twitter.com/NoelParkN22 Noel Park

    Thank you for the mention, but Noel Park net is actually noelparknet.com.

  • http://www.facebook.com/james.straffon James Straffon

    If you’re interested, there’s a petition to sign here:


  • http://londonist.com/ Lindsey Clarke

    And Haringey Council are talking to the Arts Council :

    Haringey Council urges Arts Council to help bring back Banksy

    Haringey Council has today written to the Arts Council to ask for help to bring a missing Banksy mural back to the borough.

    The ‘Slave Labour’ artwork appeared on a wall at the corner of Whymark Avenue and Wood Green High Road in May 2012.

    But it was removed from Haringey last weekend and will be up for sale in the United States on Saturday.

    The mural is expected to fetch up to $700,000 when it goes under the hammer at Fine Art Auctions Miami.

    The council is leading a campaign to bring back Banksy, and has called on the Arts Council to intervene due to the local and national significance of the art work.

    Cllr Alan Strickland, Wood Green ward councillor and Cabinet Member for Economic Development,Culture, and Social Inclusion, said: “The Banksy created a huge amount of excitement when it first appeared, and residents are understandably shocked and angry that it has been removed for private sale.

    “The community feels that this art work was given to it for free, and that it should be kept in Haringey where it belongs, not sold for a fast buck.

    “This is an area that was rocked by riots less than a year before this mural was painted, and for many in the community the painting has become a real symbol of local pride.

    “I’ve written to the Arts Council to ask them to explore whether this art work is being exported appropriately.

    “We’re asking the Arts Council to intervene because we believe that the strong local and national significance of the mural mean it is wrong to export it.

    “We’re determined to do what we can to bring back Banksy to Haringey.”

  • Richard McKeever

    As predicted in this article, artistic responses have begun to appear.

    Here is a photo of the site this afternoon (Weds 20th Feb)

    in between the text “Danger Thieves” It shows a larger figure
    appearing to run off clutching a heart. The smaller figure arms aloft
    looks angry or distraught.

    In a separate illustration a small pink dinosaur sits framed by the new plaster.

    I expect the owner of this building may spend a considerable amount
    of their “income” from the sale of the Banksy on paint over the
    forthcoming months!

    • http://twitter.com/ionlyspeakgeek Gail

      Apparently Poundland who own the wall say they were not aware of the removal.. How someone can steal a private bit of wall & get away with it is unreal!

      • lindsey

        Poundland don’t own the property.

  • J fremlin

    Why doesn’t Bansky just go out tonight and paint 100 slave labor pieces on public buildings, thereby devaluing the price of the piece on auction? If he wants to keep credibility as a street artist, that’s exactly what they need to do!