BANKSY’S MEDITERRANEAN SEA VIEW TRIPTYCH SOLD FOR £2.2M GBP

All proceeds will go to the BASR hospital in Bethlehem.

By Balthazar Malevolent

BANKSY’S MEDITERRANEAN SEA VIEW TRIPTYCH SOLD FOR £2.2M GBP

Recently, Sotheby's London auctioned off a Banksy 2017 triptych, entitled Mediterranean Sea View. The three paintings, after a bidding war between two unidentified investors, have been sold for £2.2 m GBP (about $2.8 million USD). The final cost was almost twice the initial pre-sale valuation of £1.2 m GBP (about $1.5 million) — marking the second-highest price ever for an obscure British artist's work. All proceeds will go to buy new children's rehabilitation facilities at the Bethlehem BASR hospital, and to build a new acute stroke unit at the clinic.

Banksy's Mediterranean Sea View.Banksy's Mediterranean Sea View.Banksy's Mediterranean Sea View.

The drawings were first made for the Banksy's Walled Off Hotel in Bethlehem. They have been hang in the hotel lobby since 2017. The works consist of three oil paintings on canvas portraying 19th-century style seascapes alongside discarded lifejackets and buoys to shed light on the tragic deaths of thousands of migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea in the midst of the global migrant crisis.

"This work juxtaposes a classic form of fine art with grim contemporaneity," Sotheby's described in a statement. "While posing as the as the Natural Sublime paintings of the eighteenth or nineteenth century, the present work undermines and subverts the perceptions of the spectator to tackle a difficult contemporary problem."

The Sotheby sale also included paintings by Rembrandt, Picasso, and Bridget Riley amongst others. Rembrandt's 1632 self-portrait has been sold for £14.5 m GBP (about $19 m USD). There was a total of 70 lots on sale at the live-streamed auction.

The Rembrandt to Richter auction was unique in that it spanned five centuries of Old Masters art into contemporary work. Helena Newman, the president of Sotheby's Europe, said the wide range catered for "a new generation of collectors who have less concern with the past conventional divisions of the art market."

She added: "With the world art calendar changing, we, too, have taken the chance to do things differently."

In other news, "I'm not the type to make gowns for the ball or do hand-beading," says Rick Owens, the native of California from his Paris office. "It's my couture and my furniture. I use rare materials and specialist skills craftsmen to create unique, uncommon objects."

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