New Banksy art in NYC already removed after less than 24 hours

On Tuesday afternoon, new art from Banksy was spotted on New York’s Lower East Side as part of the artist’s month-long “residency” in the city. Banksy had announced his NYC stint, called “Better Out Than In” on his website. He said he’d be “attempting to host an entire show on the streets of New York.”

Though the show got off to a rocky start when the first piece on Allen Street was partially dismantled and then entirely painted over less than 24 hours after it was discovered.

According to The Lo-Down, about 9:30 Tuesday evening “a guy on a bike was spotted ripping the sign from the wall,” which left one of the kids in the art looking dismembered:

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Animal reports that later in the evening the sign was replaced by a group called Smart Crew with some commentary of their own:


By 8:30am Wednesday morning, the art had been painted over entirely:


Banksy had left an 800 number accompanying the original art. When called, it played the following message, which proves to be even more prescient after seeing the art’s fate over the last day.

Hello, and welcome to lower Manhattan. Before you, you will see a spray art by the artist Bansky [sic]. Or maybe not. It’s probably been painted over by now. If, however, you can still make it out, you’re looking at a type of picture called “graffiti,” from the Latin “graffito,” which means “graffiti, with an ‘O.'” The children in this case represent youth, and the sign represents, well, signs.
Now let us pause for a moment to consider the deeper meaning of this work. Okay, that’s long enough.
This piece is typical of Bansky’s output, relying as it does on life-sized characters viewed at a level perspective in monochrome. This, in fact, is achieved by spraying automotive spray paint through an intricately-cut shape in a piece of cardboard. Or to give it its proper term: cheating.
What exactly is the artist trying to say here? Is this a response to the primal urge? To take the tools of our oppression and turn them into mere playthings? Or perhaps it is a postmodern comment on how the signifiers of objects have become as real as the objects themselves.
Are you kidding me? Who writes this stuff? Anyway, you decide. Really, please do. I have no idea.

(Kindly transcribed by The Atlantic Wire.)

It remains to be seen whether Banksy can evade the cops for an entire month of graffitiing in NYC—but so far its seems its civilians are getting the better of him.