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Saturday, May 03, 2008

Banksy in Leake Street

We popped around the corner this morning and queued with the hundreds of others to have a peak at Banksy's secret tunnel project, The Cans Festival. This closed down street underneath Waterloo Station has been transformed by Banksy and 29 other artists into a glorious underground exhibition space. Whilst I'm still not convinced that the two things (graffiti and organised exhibitions) go together there's no denying that there's a power to these pieces of artwork that I don't 'get' from many other works of art. For me, it's the stumbling upon them whilst walking around London that gives them an extra frisson of subordination.

What's very funny to me, and just a little ironic, is that I remember coming upon an original Banksy in the very same street a couple of years ago (a monkey with a detonator preparing to blow up a bunch of bananas)...it was unceremoniously painted over by Network Rail who said, "We don't want graffiti on our property and we will remove it," he said. "It's ugly, illegal and the public don't like it." Now, it would seem they've changed their minds!

Go see it, it's only there in full for three days (until 5th May), and best of all the tunnel comes out on Lower Marsh, and only a few yards from I Knit London!

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