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Banksy Piece To Become Part Of Toronto Condo Development
August 6, 2013
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banksy-toronto-feature.jpg
The original 2010 Banksy mural as it appeared on a wall at 90 Harbour Street (Photo: AP)

A work by street artist Banksy is about to appear somewhere the artist didn't intend: on the wall of a condo development in Toronto.

In 2010 the artist, whose identity is unknown, visited Toronto and is believed to have left behind seven pieces of artwork on various walls and surfaces.

Most of those works have been painted over or destroyed since, but development company Menkes preserved the piece above and announced plans to incorporate it into a condo building they're putting up on the site where it was originally painted.

Banksy created the work at 90 Harbour Street, which was the former headquarters of the OPP.

"Place matters to him. He'd hate to see it in a condo building I think," Will Ellsworth-Jones, author of 'Banksy: The Man Behind the Wall', told The Toronto Star.

The building at 90 Harbour was demolished, but Menkes preserved the wall with Banksy's work on it.

"The thought was it would be natural to put that back there and let the public enjoy it," said Mark Karam, Menkes vice president. "The idea that's being talked about would be to put it somewhere where it's accessible to the public."

Of the other Banksy pieces that showed up in Toronto, only one remains where it was originally painted. That piece is on a building near Church Street and the Esplanade, where it's been covered in Plexiglass for protection.

Many of Banksy's works are valued at hundreds of thousands of dollars or more (Karam suggested the police officer could be worth about $1 million), but many of them have been subjected to vandalism or destruction.

Here are a few other cases of works assumed to be by Banksy that were destroyed or modified. For some more examples, check out this Facebook page of destroyed and damaged Banksy works.

Robot And Boy In Torquay, UK Altered
banksy-robot-boy.jpg
Banksy work on the side of a hotel in Torquay (Photo: SWNS.com/Daily Mail)

Before this mural was damaged using paint stripper in May 2011, the owner of the hotel it was painted on was planning on opening a nightclub called Banksy.

A few months earlier, the owner had spent about $1,100 to protect the artwork, adding a perspex glass covering, which was also broken in the incident.

Parachuting Rat In Melbourne, Australia Destroyed By Bathroom Pipes
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The rat artwork before and after destruction (Photos: The Australian/cgs327/Flickr/Steven Crabtree)

A Melbourne builder destroyed this one by accident.

According to The Guardian, the builder was installing pipe for a bathroom and drilled a hole through the middle of the work.

Pulp Fiction And Bananas In London Painted Over By London Transport
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The artwork before and after transport authorities painted over it (Photos: BBC)

Back in 2007, Transport for London, the department that oversees public transportation in London, UK painted over the Pulp Fiction-referencing Banksy work on the left.

At the time, representatives of Transport for London told the BBC that a tough line had to be taken on graffiti because it "created an atmosphere of social decay."

Boy With Gun Vandalized In LA
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A Banksy work in the Westwood neighbourhood in LA before and after vandalism (Photos: Ted Soqui/Pia Mia)

This piece in Los Angeles' Westwood neighbourhood was hit by vandals back in February, 2011.

Via The Toronto Star

Related:

Banksy, Meet Tom Hanks. Fans Of Clever Art Pranks, Meet Hanksy.

Above The Street Spirit: Thom Yorke And Jay-Z Redesign NY Water Tanks

This Artist Hid His Life Savings Inside A Gallery To Encourage More People To Visit

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