All posts tagged: “Exit Through the Gift Shop”

BANKSY NOMINATED: Another Breathless Banksy Update 01.25.11


Congratulations to Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz for the Oscar Nomination! The Five Nominated Films for Best Documentary Feature Are:

  • “Exit through the Gift Shop” Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz (Paranoid Pictures)

  • Gasland” Josh Fox, director (Gasland Productions, LLC)

  • Inside Job” Charles Ferguson, director (Representational Pictures)

  • Restrepo” Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger, directors (Outpost Films)

  • Waste Land” Lucy Walker, director (Almega Projects)


Banksy. (photo © Bansky) Image Courtesy of Banksy

Banksy goes to Hollywood or will he? Now that the world famous British Street Artist has been nominated for best documentary for his film “Exit Through The Gift Shop” the rumour mill will continue churning fast and furious about whether or not he will attend the Academy Awards ceremony to be held on Sunday February 27 at the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, CA.

This, no doubt, presents Mr. Banksy with an existential conundrum: His anonymity, as it is, is clearly half of his identity; His fans and critics fill in the blanks with their own projections about a mythical creature; his personality occupying an anti-establishment court jester sort of space in the public mind. If half of his passionately guarded identity is replaced with a closer to real one, will his public stock go up? His wit certainly would be a benefit when giving a speech in front of an auditorium packed with golden heroes of the silver screen; The conundrum is not unlike that of a superhero, or super anti-hero in this case. One might consult with Superman, Batman and Spider man as they too have been presented with a similar fork on the road in their travels

Of course he could always ask Mr. Brainwash to be his stand in, walk the red carpet for him and (gasp!) accept the award on his behalf should he be the night’s recipient of such prestigious recognition. No longer his understudy, and having “mastered” the art of Banksy’s style and pretty much everything else, Mr. Brainwash would no doubt most graciously oblige.

Betting  has begun in earnest about his chances to win the golden statuette.

To learn more about the Academy Awards visit their official site at:

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Another Breathless Banksy Update 01.19.11

Awards Season, Ebay Auctions, And Other Tales

brooklyn-street-art-banksy-web-triptychHis mysterious excellency in “Exit Through the Gift Shop” ©Paranoid Pictures

The nominees for the 2011 ©Oscar Ceremony to be held in Los Angeles in February 27 will be announced the 25th of  January and we expect the feeding frenzy of no-news will continue its build up with legions of smart publicists and studio’s marketing heads selectively leaking or straight-up spoon feeding stories to us. We’ve heard that Bansky’s crockumentary “Exit Through the Gift Shop” has made the short list of 15 films to be considered for best documentary and because you have a Twitter account, so have you. If he is nominated we can’t wait to see a bimbo with a microphone asking him on the red carpet, “And who are you wearing?”

Sadly, Swiss film maker Joachim Levy says he was left off the credits in the movie and should have been included, according to a New York Times piece by Melena Ryzik, “A few minutes of “Life Remote Control” and some footage from Mr. Guetta and Mr. Levy appear in “Exit Through the Gift Shop,” which subsequently became the story of how Mr. Guetta was transformed, with Banksy’s prodding, from a chronicler of street art into an artist himself”.  He’s protesting bitterly about his exclusion from the credits, and the cash cow the movie is turning into, we might add.

For all we know this is just one of the many marketing plots that Banksy or Banksy’s camp have concocted to create extra buzz for the film in the hopes that it would get nominated by the Academy.  What with the many interviews (via email) that the normally invisible Banksy has granted?  So far the strategy appears to be working as the film did get a nomination this week  from the BAFTA people (the British version of the Oscars) for outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer.


And finally, we won’t get to find out his true identity now that Ebay has taken down the auction that had 38 bidders up to almost a million bucks. The prize? A scrap of paper with his alleged real name. Sorry kids, no Banksy or Santa Clause information will be revealed.  Luckily you can still bid on a chunk of concrete with a rat stencil sprayed on it.

Tomorrow on Ebay, to more robust bidding I expect, I will be auctioning my electric bill from December. As a bonus you’ll see the price of a weekly Metrocard and a cellphone shot of my granny’s teeth in a glass.


What are we to think? Is Banksy behind this “auction”? For sure he knows his own identity, or does he? And why would this be on Ebay? – Shouldn’t it be on Sotheby’s or Christie’s?

In the next “‘Breathless Banksy Update” we’ll talk about who we think should design his full length burka-style  hoodie to attend the Academy Awards ceremony should he be so lucky as to snag a nomination. If he is reading this, as we know he most certainly is, we urgently implore him to start looking for a designer PRONTO.

In the midst of all the speculation about Banksy’s identity, perhaps the elephant is on the screen in your living room.


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Fun Friday 01.07.11


Tonight in Brooklyn: “Wholetrain” Screening at Closing Party for H. Veng Smith


Tonight at Pandemic they’ll be screening the film “Wholetrain” to close the “Identifiable Reality” show by H. Veng Smith.

“Florian Gaag manages to recount a tale colored by tension and aggression. The result is a many-sided portrait of characters whose world has never been documented in this way before. Their subculture remains authentic and realistic. Edgy editing and grandiloquent camerawork, a pulsating soundtrack and an excellent ensemble of actors, make WHOLETRAIN a film experience not to be missed.” – Wholetrain Website


PANDEMIC gallery
37 Broadway btwn Kent and Wythe
Brooklyn, NY 11211

Walk All Over Shepard Fairey If You Like

On the streets of Milan, Italy five artists (Shepard Fairey, Invader, The London Police, Flying Fortress and Rendo) has been invited to create about 20 manhole covers.

more at The Street Art Blog


West Coast Holla! – Here’s Three;

Carmichael Gallery “After the Rain”


Carmichael’s first show of the year “After the Rain” featuring new work by Boogie, Guy Denning, Aakash Nihalani, and Pascual Sisto.

5795 Washington Blvd Culver City, CA 90232
January 8 – February 5, 2011

Opening Reception: Saturday, January 8, 2011, 6-8pm

Whoops, “There It Is” at ThinkSpace

“There it Is” at ThinkSpace

‘There It Is’
Featuring new works from three Oakland CA artists:
Brett Amory / Adam Caldwell / Seth Armstrong
(Main Gallery)
Paul Barnes
‘Happy Valley’
(Project Room)
Both exhibits on view: January 8th – January 29th
Opening Reception: Sat, January 8th 7-10PM

Thinkspace Art Gallery
6009 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232
(310) 558-3375 | Open Wed. – Sat.
or by appointment

“Street Degrees of Street” – Abztract Collective


Abztract Collective and Crewest Gallery group show “Street Degrees of Separation”

Opening Reception Jan 2008


110 Winston Street

Los Angeles, CA

213 627 8272

BOXI and BANKSY TAKE No. 1 Spots

Here are the Final Results of the Year End 2010 BSA Polls

It was a blast to watch the images jumping positions like a horse race for the last weeks of the year as two BSA Polls were up on the Huffington Post.  Thousands of people participated in the voting and we got lots of funny emails, and some varying opinions – and here are the results;

As voted by readers on Huffing Post Arts page , here are the top 10 Brooklyn Street Art images from 2010.

1. Boxi


2. ROA, “Ibis”

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Jaime-Rojo-2 ibis

3. ROA, “Squirrel”


4. Retna & El Mac


6. Os Gemeos and Futura


7. Jef Soto


8. El Mac

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Jaime-Rojo-8-El Mac

9. Gaia


10. Gaia



And in our highly subjective and fun compilation of 10 Best Street Art Moments of the Decade, here are the results of the votes – The Top Five

1.     “Exit Through the Gift Shop”, Banksy

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Jaime-Rojo-DECADE 1 BANKSY

Image promotional still from movie.

2.     Tate Modern hosts “Street Art”

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Tate Photography-DECADE 2 TATE

© Tate Photography

3.     Nuart Festival Established by Martyn Reed

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-CF Salicath-DECADE 3 NUART

© CF Salicath

4.     Shepard Fairey’s Obama Posters

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Jaime-Rojo-DECADE 4 Fairey

© Jaime Rojo

5.     Swoon’s Swimming City Arrives at Venice Biennale

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Tod-Seelie-DECADE 5 Swoon

© Tod Seelie

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BSA Holiday Giveaway : Banksy, C215, Street Art New York, Beautiful Losers


Dear BSA Readers: We’ve invited six artists to participate in this year’s “Eleven Wishes for 2011”. That leaves 5 empty spots.  Now we would like to invite five BSA family like you to be a part of it — and win extravagant prizes for your efforts:

All you need to do is send ONE wish and ONE picture or image file to no later than December 17 and we’ll pick the 5 winners.



THE DEEEELUXE PLATINUM BUCKET: This prize will go to the first TWO submissions we pick. In addition to being featured on BSA “Eleven wishes for 2011” these two lucky readers will also get:

A copy of Banksy’s “Exit through the gift shop” DVD.
A copy of “Beautiful Losers” DVD.
A copy of C215 new book “Community Service” (release date 01/28/11, but you get yours now!)
A signed copy of our new book “Street Art New York”.

THE GOLD PLATED BUCKET: This prize will go to the next THREE submissions we pick. In addition to being featured on BSA “Eleven Wishes for 2011” these three lucky readers will also get:

A copy of Banksy’s “Exit through the gift shop” DVD.
A copy of “Beautiful Losers” DVD
A signed copy of our new book “Street Art New York”.

RULES: You must write a wish for 2011 that you wish for yourself or others; extra points for personal and respectful. Image can be anything BUT you must hold the copyrights to publish the image. Image must be at least 740 wide, and can be in .jpg, .tif, .png, or similar format.  Submissions must be received no later than December 17, 2010. Please include your postal address to receive the prizes. Final selections are made by the editors and buckets are not included. We can’t wait to hear from you!!!

5 Examples from last year; Martha Cooper, Broken Crow, Jef Aerosol, Hellbent, Cake

SHOUT OUTs: To Beastie Boy Adam Yauch and Joshua Fu at Oscilloscope Laboratories for donating the DVDs. Go to this link to see their full selection of titles.  Also to our editor Jeremy Echard at Critères éditions for the c215 books before they are even published, and to Ali Gitlow at Prestel Publishing for Street Art New York. Thank you all!

PRIZE Descriptions

Exit Through the Gift Shop, Director: Banksy
A chaotic trip through low-level criminality, comradeship, and incompetence. By turns shocking, hilarious and absurd, this is an enthralling modern-day fairytale… with bolt cutters.
Exit Through the Gift Shop DVD

Beautiful Losers, Director: Aaron Rose
In the early 1990’s a loose-knit group of like-minded outsiders found common ground at a little NYC storefront gallery. Rooted in the DIY (do-it-yourself) subcultures of skateboarding, surf, punk, hip-hop, and graffiti, they made art that reflected the lifestyles they led. Featuring, Shepard Fairey, Ed Templeton, Mike Mills, Harmony Korine, Barry McGee, Chris Johanson, Geoff McFetridge, Jo Jackson, Margaret Kilgallen, Stephen Powers, and Thomas Campbell.
Beautiful Losers DVD

Street Art New York, Authors: Steven P. Harrington and Jaime Rojo
with forward by Carolina A Miranda, published by Prestel
Written by the founders of, Street Art New York the authors take you on a fast sprint through the streets, along the waterways, on the rooftops, and up the walls of todays ever-morphing Street Art scene, as only New York can tell it. Featured in this unplugged and dynamic collection of images are works by 100+ artists, some wildly exciting newcomers as well as some of the “old masters”, each one telling their New York story.

C215 Community Service, Author: C215
with introduction and interview by Steven P. Harrington, and preface by Marc & Sara Schiller from Wooster Collective and Thierry Froger, published Jan 2011 by Critères éditions.
World famous globe-trotting French stencil artist C215 as seen through the eyes of 12 of today’s renowned street art photographers, covering ground in New York, London, Tel Aviv, Dakar, Moscow, Vitry, Casablanca, and New Delhi among others. In a style recognizable by Street Art fans everywhere, C215 raises the game to poetry while keeping it very human. Photographers include Vitostreet (FR), Chrixcel (FR), RomanyWG (GBR), Luna Park(US), Jaime Rojo (US), Lois Stavsky (US), Jessica Stewart (IT), Vinny Cornelli (US), Elodie Wilhem (CHE), Lionel Belluteau (FR), Unusualimage (GBR), and Gregory J. Smith(BR).

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Ellis G. Lands Inside and Outside the Banksy Film

Ellis G. Lands Inside and Outside the Banksy Film

BAM!  The opening montage flies by with the raucous music and your pulse is quickening, spotting art and artists and graffers and wild creatures and you may be wondering where this is all going until it becomes clear — you have landed in Banksy world. He’ll let somebody else tell the time-twisting story inside a story, and then he’ll weigh in with acerbically insightful bonmots….much like the stuff he leaves on the street.

Ellis G. was doing backflips when he saw footage of himself in that opening sequence, and was stoked to be seeing it with a group of people directly related to the street art scene.  As is customary for the Brooklyn street artist, Ellis G. had already traced with thick chalk the shadows outside the spot where the movie was previewed .

In a short time, he was doing it inside too.


Brooklyn Street Art: How did your work come off the sidewalk and into this theater?

Ellis G: Marc and Sara Schiller invited me out to a private screening of the film last week and I did a couple street pieces out in front of the venue and also in front of the afterparty for the screening.  Banksy caught wind that I did those, and requested that I do work inside and outside of the Sunshine Theater for the New York premiere of the film.


Brooklyn Street Art: How would you describe what you do as an artist?

Ellis G. : My work is directly related to everyday life. The content and subject matter of my work are all items or objects we deal with on a daily basis consciously and subconsciously;  Items and objects on the street outside as well as inside. Fortunately, my sources for subject matter are never-ending.


Light is everywhere, creating shadows from all types of different light sources. I capture and enhance it. Outside, it can be fleeting.  Weather, pedestrian and vehicular traffic are considered.  Building owners or maintenance hose it away with water. One minute it’s here, the next it’s gone. Inside is a whole different ball game. It becomes photography and screen prints. It becomes installation and sculpture. Most times there is a rhyme and reason behind which objects I work with. Sometimes I like to randomly choose objects, in random geographical locations when I am outside. It really depends on what is catching my eye at the moment. The light source comes into play, as does color, dry or wet streets, surface, backgrounds, architecture, chalk brand, location, and vehicular as well as pedestrian traffic.


Brooklyn Street Art: Since you are working with Banksy, does this mean you are going to start wearing a hood and talking like Darth Vader?

Ellis G.: No, I will not be rocking a hoodie and talking like Luke Skywalker’s father anytime soon.
Here is Ellis’s donation the Street Art New York Silent Auction Benefit:


See more pieces from the auction at

Learn more about the Street Art New York Silent Auction Benefit

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MBW takes a Big Bite: “Exit Through the GiftShop” Opens in US 4/16

The Banksy Movie With So Much More

One basis for “beef” on the street is another artist “biting” your style. But enthusiastic Thierry Guetta proved to be such a good student that he’s nearly made an art out of it.


The danger presented by “Exit Through the Giftshop”, opening April 16th in New York, is not that Shepard Fairey and Banksy discovered too late for their comfort that a trusted acolyte and “documentarian” eventually imitated their aesthetic approaches successfully, but that he studied their marketing manuals too.

“Exit” is a blast – and not just for those considering themselves insiders because they caught the Street Art Train just as it pulled away from all previous definitions of urban/graff/public/fine art.  This hilarious high-speed romp knows how to keep the storyline infused with new oxygen with each twist of plot, with players swapping in and out of the frame to illustrate points, and locations jarringly jabbing throughout with a Blair Witch finesse for nausea.  In the end it appears that no animals were harmed.  But few in the “Street Art” world will be able to say the same.

For the fans, many of the names (and some of the faces) you know are all in here, a scatter-shot list dictated by Guerra’s dedicated following of the secretive and shadowy urban art trail: a lot of Banksy and Fairey, and slices of Invader, Zeus, Swoon, Neckface, Borf, Dan Witz, Sweet Toof, Faile, Ron English, among others.  Other players like Steve Lazarides and Roger Gastman help us to ground the machinations in the context of the chaotic developments. Darth Vader, I mean Banksy, slopes in the shadows dropping dollops of witticism like so many blobs of paint and comes off more haunted than haunting.

Banksy clearly says at one point, “It’s not about the hype. It’s not about the money,” but most viewers will feel a twinge of incredulity at the statement, however heartfelt in that moment. Any artist who goes to such lengths to insure anonymity and stage installation stunts that top the previous ones may have calculated a wee bit of the old evil hype into the equation.  The story as presented shows how hype for it’s own sake can become unhinged entirely from it’s core mission, clone itself at a rapacious pace and unwieldy velocity, and finally stand by itself as an art.

It’s too easy to flatten the layers of the actors in this post-post-post modern play, and lazy.  It’s not just a story of two street artists unwittingly training their competition while enjoying the company of a one-man glee club with one hand on the ladder and a roving eye. Instead a documentary of this complexity may stand as a jittery cautionary tale, a dramatic foreshadowing of a world of de-contextualized images, recombined and employed with a sharp hand for any purpose anywhere.  It’s not the first time that imagery has been appropriated and re-engineered – it’s just the ease of use and wonderful availability of it all.  As one of MBW’s graphic artists explained about the process of creating new works for him to give up or down thumbs, “We scan the pictures and use Photoshop”.  Hopefully increased cultural literacy of these technological truths will prepare us to deal with future mash-ups of things we once considered institutions.

Brooklyn-Street-Art-MBWS DON'T BE CRUEL copy

Guetta is at times depicted as a loyal fan, an insatiable documentarian, an unsteady hand, a loving family man, and an immensely driven director of his career. For the measured hand-wringing Fairey and Banksy express about their association with the elephant in the living room that eventually emulated them, each of them is too smart not to have seen it coming, and they seem to delight in the waves he has made. While reflecting on his own tumultuous path through the street art world as it continued to explode around him, the filmmaker, street artist, and man behind the moniker MBW says, “I don’t know how to play chess, but my life is a chess game”. Check!

“Exit Through the Gift Shop” comes to the US April 16.

Exit Through the Giftshop

Sunshine, NY    16-Apr
Lincoln Plaza, NY    16-Apr
The Landmark, LA    16-Apr
Arclight, Hollywood    16-Apr
Embarcadero, SF    16-Apr
Shattuck, Berkeley    16-Apr
Rafael, San Rafael    16-Apr
Aquarius, Palo Alto    16-Apr
Ritz 5, Philadelphia    23-Apr
Century, Chicago    23-Apr
Harvard Exit, Seattle    23-Apr
Kendall Square, Boston    23-Apr
Lagoon, Minneapolis    30-Apr
E Street, Washington, DC    30-Apr
Harbor, Baltimore    30-Apr
Midtown Art, Atlanta    30-Apr
Mayan, Denver    30-Apr
Hillcrest, SD    30-Apr
Main/Maple Art, Detroit    7-May
River Oaks, Houston    7-May
Angelika, Dallas    7-May
Downer, Milwaukee    7-May
Avon, Providence    7-May
Plaza Frontenac, St. Louis    14-May

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Art or prank? Banksy Film Reviews…

Gravely voiced distortion adds to the Grim Reaper effect, whereupon he slashes you with a one-liner.

Gravely voiced distortion adds to the Grim Reaper effect, whereupon he slashes you with a one-liner.

The Banksy movie buzz deafens and I feel like it will be at the local art theatre at any moment – Which would be fantastic because the very thought of flying to Utah last week scared me.  I’d rather hitch hike on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway in a Village People costume.

AS A SMALL PUBLIC SERVICE  we provide the insatiable street art fans… here are some recent reviews from reputable rags, I mean sources.   If anything seems savory, click on the link to read the rest.

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Nathan Rabin @ Sundance ’10

by Nathan Rabin , The AV Club, January 27, 2010

Exit Through The Gift Shop: It’s hard to write about Exit Through The Gift Shop, or do it justice without revealing many of its twists and turns. That’s a damned shame, because so much of what makes legendarily secretive street artist Banksy’s directorial debut such a hoot is its unpredictability. The trippy art world satire begins with a loopy post-modern premise. In Gift Shop, an eccentric, street art loving Frenchman named Thierry Guetta set out to make a documentary about a new breed of artists who scrawl their masterpieces on walls and overpasses and nabbed the Holy Grail of street art fans when he hooked up with Banksy, (for more go to AV Club)

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Eyes on the prize

By Ty Burr, The Boston Globe  / January 30, 2010

But, yes, the Banksy film is that good, even if everyone here calls it “the Banksy film’’ because the actual title, “Exit Through the Gift Shop,’’ seems weirdly hard to remember. It’s a conceptual Chinese box that works: A doc about a filmmaker that’s directed by the subject that filmmaker was too hapless to actually make a movie about. Still with me? (for more go to the fifth paragraph)

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Banksy and Chris Morris prove hits at the Sundance Film Festival

By Damon Wise, The Times Online  / January 30, 2010


The first film from the street-art prankster Banksy was unexpectedly popular with the Sundance crowd, whose only experience of the artist’s guerrilla tactics was the mysterious appearance of five of his works around town.

Screened in the publicity-shy director’s absence, Exit Through the Gift Shop left some viewers wondering if Banksy really was sitting next to them, as the Sundance staffer introducing the film had hinted, although many more were left wondering how much of this funny and provocative documentary was actually true.

Starting with an exhilarating montage of graffiti artists (for more go to the TimesOnline)

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Banksy’s “Gift” challenges conventional concepts

Justin Lowe, Reuters, Tue January 26, 2010

Nonfiction cinema or provocation? Art or prank? Questions of authorship, authenticity and credibility cleave through “Exit Through the Gift Shop,” a nearly unclassifiable hybrid documentary film by international “street artist” phenom Banksy.

Originally identified as “Spotlight Surprise” in the film listings, Sundance programmers revealed the title only a few days before its January 24 world premiere.

Touching on contemporary cultural trends, the popular/high art divide and celebrity obsession while showcasing world-renowned artists, “Exit” offers broad audience appeal, particularly for urban and international viewers captivated by underground art, as well as film fans fascinated by unconventional narrative techniques.

(for more go to Reuters News Service)

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The Berlin International Film Festival has added the documentary “Exit Through the Gift Shop” from British street artist Banksy to its official 60th anniversary program, completing its 2010 lineup.

“Exit Through the Gift Shop,” will have an out of competition screening in Berlin – so if you are going to be there on the 14th, get your tickets HERE.

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“A Culture Jammer’s Wet Dream” BSA Exclusive Banksy Movie Still from “Exit Through the Gift Shop”

In this still from the film Banksy contemplates momentarily between hell-raising and thrill-seeking.
In this exclusive still from the film, Banksy contemplates momentarily between hell-raising and thrill-seeking.

Last night the debut feature from Banksy “Exit Through the Gift Shop” showed at Sundance Film Festival. The secret surprise screening (announced the same day) was anything but – thanks to the power of leaks and Twitter, an army of PR machines, and the BBC. Somehow they filled the seats. And if you were looking for celebrities, Adrian Grenier, who has spent some times on Brooklyn’s mean  streets, was spotted in the crowd as they pushed their way into the theatre. So there, it’s officially hot.

Maybe part of the reason people anticipated the screening was because Park City, Utah is not a suburb of London, yet strangely a Banksy piece showed up on the wall of the local coffee shop, The Java Cow. You’ve seen it 10 times already. – Which is why the owner of the  little coffee shop is probably contracting a moving company to hoist his caffeine castle onto a flatbed truck and sell it to Goldman Sachs as a lobby trinket.

For more pictures of pieces attributed to Banksy during the Sundance Film Festival, see this collection from the good animals at People. I mean the good people at ANIMAL.

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