The Banksy Sotheby’s auction begins tonight. You can watch it live in Sotheby’s Decentraland virtual gallery.
The prestigious art auction house is 277 years old, but it is highly forward-thinking in its approach. In June, Sotheby’s acquired one of the first-ever metaverse galleries, surprising many in the real world. Tonight, Sotheby’s will host an auction going live in Decentraland, featuring famous art by Banksy and others.
The digital Sotheby’s auction house is located in Decentraland’s Voltaire Art District. The building is a replica of the auction house’s famous New Bond Street Galleries in London. Additionally, from this metaverse space, people in Decentraland will be able to bid on two Banksy art pieces, amongst others. You can enter the gallery district here.
The Now Evening Auction
Basically, the Banksy Sotheby’s auction is part of a broader auction collection tonight, called The Now Evening Auction. This auction consists of 23 lots, focussing on the most exciting and cutting edge works of the last twenty years.
The auction hopes to provide masterpiece context for ‘well-established, newly canonized artists’. However, they also want to ‘create a heightened visibility and relevant historical context for younger artists’. The Now Evening Auction will establish the masters of today and tomorrow.
The auction is led by “Yoshitomo Nara’s 1996 masterpiece, Nice to See You Again; the auction combines figurative and abstract vernaculars, with majestic paintings by Mark Bradford dovetailing with best of type works by the likes of Banksy, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Jordan Casteel, Lisa Brice and Thomas Schütte.
Another key point is that “the works together form a portrait of the varied tendencies and trends that constitute of the art of our time”, according to the website.
Banksy at Sotheby’s auction
Banksy is a pseudonymous England-based street artist heavily involved in political activism.
His art is easily recognizable by its distinctive stencilling technique and satirical nature. Often layered with dark humour, his street art is a commentary on social and political issues. Although he is an anonymous artist, he is undoubtedly one of the most known artists globally, with his art selling for tens of millions at auction consequently.
Furthermore, the auction artwork for sale is Trolley Hunters, and Love is in the Air. They occupy Lot 11 and Lot 12, respectively.
Banksy and Sotheby’s auction could have a twist.
Finally, don’t rule out something bizarre happening during the auction. Banksy and Sotheby’s have a history together. In 2o18, Sotheby’s sold a Banksy piece titled Girl with Balloon for £1,042,000.
The auction was a success but what happened next was mind-blowing. Within minutes of the sale, a mechanism built into the artwork’s frame shredded the piece altogether. Hence, Love is in the Bin was born from the shredded work. Sotheby’s declared it “the first artwork in history to have been created live during an auction.”
Since then, Love is in the Bin has gone on to become Banksy’s record sale. It sold at auction for £18.5 million this October.