Following false rumors that police had possibly arrested Banksy (see “Has Banksy Been Arrested Outside London?“), the British street artist has painted a new piece, the Telegraph reports. The work was created on the side of a building near the docks in the English city of Bristol, but by Tuesday morning the mural had already been defaced with a splatter of black paint.
The mural, entitled Girl with a Pierced Eardrum (2014), parodies Johannes Vermeer’s masterpiece Girl with a Pearl Earring (1665) and features a yellow outdoor alarm box as the girl’s earring. The artist published a series of photographs of the new work on his website, without commenting on the fake story about his arrest and outing as a mid-aged British man named Paul Horner.
On Monday a story published on the satirical American news website National Report claimed that London’s Metropolitan Police had arrested the artist on charges of “vandalism, conspiracy, racketeering and counterfeiting.” The false arrest reports that his studio had been raided by Police turned out to be recycled story from a previous hoax.
The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum (2014) follows Banksy’s recent pieces Art Buff (2014), in Folkestone, England, which was vandalized only weeks after appearing (see “Phallic Addition to Folkestone Banksy Mural“), and Birds of a Feather (2014) which was removed by the local government who deemed it to be racist (see “Immigration-Themed Banksy Mural Destroyed by Local Council“).
It is the second time this year the artist has graced his hometown of Bristol with a Banksy original. Shortly after Mobile Lovers was unveiled on Banksy’s website, it was controversially snatched by the leader of a local youth club hoping to keep his struggling organization afloat (see “Youth Club Removes New Banksy with Crowbar“). The artist later gave the club his blessing, and it was sold to benefit the group (see “Banksy Gives Controversial Mobile Lovers Artwork to Bristol Youth Club” and “Sale of Banksy’s Mobile Lovers for $670,000 Saves Youth Club“).
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