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July 14th, 2018 by admin

Melbourne Banksy exhibition: Subversion from within as artist Adnate swipes at show

Matt ”Adnate” in front of his piece mocking the Banksy exhibition. Photo: Justin McManus An Israeli soldier walks past a Banksy mural in Bethlehem. Photo: Pacific Press
Nanjing Night Net

A Banksy mural in New York. Photo: Madman

Adnate says Banksy disapproves of the new exhibition. Photo: Justin McManus

The Art of Banksy exhibition is on at The Paddock, Federation Square. Photo: supplied

Street art by Adnate. Photo: Belinda Jackson

Adnate’s portrait of Jenny Munro in Sydney. Photo: Steven Siewert

As Melbourne counts down to the opening of a lauded Banksy exhibition, a local street artist has painted a large mural on the site of the show critical of its organiser.

Artist Matt “Adnate”, known for his moving spray-can portraits of Aboriginal people, has depicted Banksy’s former agent Steve Lazarides as Judas, because the show has not been sanctioned by Banksy, the famed, anonymous British street artist pioneer.

“The exhibition is something that Banksy disapproves of,” Adnate said.

He said that when he was first asked to be involved in the show he thought it was authorised, or put on with Bansky’s permission, and when he found it wasn’t, considered not taking part.

In the end he opted for the street artist’s main weapon – subversion.

“I thought I would use the opportunity to make a comment against Lazarides,” he said. “The mural is kind of like a Trojan horse. A collector can exhibit work, I have no problem with that, but if the artist says ‘no’ then it should not happen.”

Mr Lazarides, who is in Melbourne for the opening of the three-month exhibition, said he had seen the mural. “I can’t comment on it,” he said. “I can talk about the Banksy works but not this other stuff.”

Adnate painted the work in three days, before flying to Tahiti for a mural festival. He is one of several local artists involved in the Banksy show.

Adnate’s mural is a version of Caravaggio’s The Taking of Christ with Lazarides as Judas and Banksy, behind his trademark monkey mask, as Jesus.

“Banksy is one of the most important artists of this lifetime,” he said. “Is this exploitation? Our job is to question everything. I owe a lot to Banksy.”

Melbourne is the third stop for The Art of Banksy exhibition and it arrives after a stint in Amsterdam.

It contains 80 Banksy stencils and paintings curated by Mr Lazarides from his own and others’ collections. Mr Lazarides was Banksy’s first art dealer, from the late-1990s until 2008. Banksy’s most expensive pieces can now sell for close to $2 million.

Mr Lazarides has never said why he and Banksy fell out after 10 years. However, Banksy – who has never revealed his identity and does not give interviews – posted the following message on his website recently: “Banksy is NOT… represented by Steve Lazarides or any other commercial gallery.”

Mr Lazarides said on Wednesday he was “very disappointed” in contemporary street art because it was quasi-legal and therefore not political enough. “Too many anodyne murals,” he said. “I would rather see tags and throw-ups than that.”

There were reports on Wednesday that a stencil of Pauline Hanson that has appeared in Hosier Lane, in Banksy’s style and with his name attached, may have been done  on Tuesday night by the man himself. Video footage purporting to show Banksy running away from a camera in the laneway was being widely circulated.

The Art of Banksy exhibition runs from Friday until January 22 at The Paddock, near Federation Square. Tickets range from $10 to $70.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.