Artworks \ Todo para vender, Banksy en La Habana

Todo para vender, Banksy en La Habana

About Everything for sale, Andrzej Wajda [1969]

Nano, a collateral exhibition to the 12th Havana Biennial, Havana, Cuba [2014]


This work criticized the Cuban art market, then in a moment of speculation following the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States. All eyes were on the island and in the context of the 12th Havana Biennial, artists and institutions were waiting for the arrival of hundreds of collectors eager to take a bit of the country that was making headlines in the international media. It was in this context that the artist conceived a piece intended to appeal to the market and its changing expectations.

Siré found Banksy’s Gangster Rat in Havana, appropriated it, and set in motion a process similar to the one the art world has employed to commercialize the artist’s work against his will. The graffiti, which was on the verge of disappearing, was restored and removed from the wall using the stacco technique. With the slogan “the only Banksy alive in Cuba”, the work, valued at Art Price, was offered for sale for the sum of 40,000 USD. However, the artist set a limitation for its acquisition: regardless of the buyer’s nationality, the piece cannot leave Cuban territory. Although there have been many interested parties, no one has made the purchase.

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