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MARYLINN MONROE. THE UNKNOWN

The special exhibition presents the idol and myth of an entire epoch - the

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Top-News  |   2. November 2018

Banksy Girl with Balloon

Bansky: Girl with Balloon

Banksy is a brand. Everyone knows his pictures, which he sprays casually at night and in fog. One does not know who is really hiding behind this long-honored art. If the great unknown was once pursued by police officers and cleaning crews, it is now the collectors. And they have to be fast, real Banksys are rare. For this reason alone, the "Banksy" collection in the Kronsbein Gallery is a sensation and the largest in Germany.

 

Selected originals and editions meet here in an attractive mixture. On the one hand - one may say - icons like the Grannies Hand Sprayed or Grin Reaper Artist's Proof (on cream), but also the homage to the great predecessor Keith Haring and his dog under the title "Choose Your Weapon". On the other hand, there are more complex works such as the two versions of "Toxic Mary", which feeds the boy Jesus with a small bottle on which a skull and crossbones paper is placed (an original is shown in the exhibition). 

 

This is typical of Banksy, the street art hero knows no taboos. The Queen - and this equals blasphemy in the United Kingdom - appears in the works as a chimpanzee lady in royal ornament and for a change with Ziggy-Stardust flash over her face. On a clearly visible façade, two bobbies kiss each other, and Prime Minister Winston Churchill has to put up with a poisonous green Iroquois brush that lies like a dust rag over his raised forehead. You can literally hear the nasal protests of distinguished gentlemen from the various London clubs. The public annoyance was perfect with such stencils, and yet the British enjoyed themselves. Royal. Because Banksy doesn't deliver clumsy dismantlings, what he has to note is wonderfully ironic, refined, often enough sharply brought to the point. 

 

In between there are also some wonderfully poetic scenes like the girl "Nola", from whose umbrella orange rain falls - Kronsbein presents an artist's proof. But of course many of the spray actions, which are elaborated down to the last detail, are about social injustice - Banksy is a modern mixture of Robin Hood and Zorro - violence and gun madness. By the way, the exhibition features an elephant with a powerful rocket on its back ("Heavy Weaponry"). 

 

This is exactly what makes the guerrilla sprayer so good. That's why art agents and potent collectors are after his stencils. And it's not surprising that Hollywood stars like Leo DiCaprio, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt also belong to this circle. And then there is model elf Kate Moss, who not only collects Banksys, but was immortalized by the master as Marilyn Monroe à la Andy Warhol. A "Kate Moss" work also belongs to the Kronsbein collection.

 

The series could be continued indefinitely, and artist colleagues also like to take advantage of the opportunity. Damien Hirst was not only convinced right from the start that Banksy was "a big guy". The man who became famous for a shark inlaid with formaldehyde also owns "Napalm", one of Banksy's hardest works: Mickey Mouse and Ronald McDonald take off the screaming naked girl Kim Phuc, who suffered the most severe burns during a bombing in the Vietnam War in 1972.

 

But what do we know about this Master of Urban Art? Actually only that he probably comes from Bristol. When photos of the allegedly real Banksy appear, the denial immediately follows. And again and again the suspicion arises that it's not an individual actor, but an artist collective. That would at least explain the worldwide deployments. 

On the other hand, Banksy's social and political stance is clear. And that extends beyond his stencils. He bequeathed the painting "Mobile Lovers" to a youth club in his hometown that had run into financial difficulties. The lovers, who look at the respective smartphones during the embrace, are said to have earned the sports club a six-figure sum. This means that young people in Bristol can now continue boxing - which Banksy probably did there as well. 

 

The Kronsbein Gallery

Galerie Kronsbein, which has established itself as the top address for Pop Art and Urban Art, represents works by the main protagonists of these styles, including Banksy, Andy Warhol, Alex Katz, Blek le Rat and STIK. With its exhibitions, the gallery wants to demonstrate that Pop Art is a highly topical artistic language, based on the achievements of the Old Masters and at the same time reflecting the spirit of the times. In contrast, Urban Art, which is related to Pop Art, internalizes and develops its fundamental characteristics. Urban Art is the gallery's approach because it is forward-looking, appeals to young and old, uses, decorates, and expands public space, social criticizes, breaks, educates, and renews opinions. 

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