A S.W.A.T. van, spray painted by the elusive street artist Banksy, has just sold at Bonham’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Auction in London for £218,000.

The S.W.A.T. van has remained shrouded in mystery since September 2006, and has since been verified by the Pest Control Office, Banksy’s authorisation service. It was shown for the first – and only time – in an industrial warehouse in downtown Los Angeles, when the anonymous figure from Bristol, England, made his American debut with a solo exhibition ‘Barely Legal‘. On the opening night Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Cameron Diaz, Jude Law and Dennis Hopper were all in attendance. The show was provocative and eccentric, with an Indian elephant named Kai, painted red and gold like the wallpaper, lumbering around the gallery, and guests under strict instructions not to discuss the ‘elephant in the room’.

“All of Banksy is on show here: his bravado, his imagination, his technical prowess, his confidence and his willingness to put his head above the parapet and speak truth to power.” Ralph Taylor, Senior Director of Bonhams Post-War and Contemporary Art department

We wonder if it will disappear for another ten years until we see it again!



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