Arts·Hi, Art

Hi, art! Rounding up all the wacky stuff that's happened since that Toronto Banksy exhibit opened

Say hello to Banksy, Banksy, Banksy and a few of our other favourite stories of the week, too.

Say hello to Banksy, Banksy, Banksy and a few of our other favourite stories of the week, too

Tossing you a bouquet of Banksy links, among other things. (AFP/Getty Images)

Hello! You're reading the CBC Arts newsletter, and if you like what you see, stick around! Sign up here, and every Sunday we'll send you a fresh email packed with art, culture and a metric truckload of eye candy, hand-picked by our small and mighty team. Here's what we've been talking about this week.

Hi, art lovers!

We're writing you from Toronto, where it's been Banksy, Banksy, Banksy all week, what with a massive exhibition of the artist's prints and paintings and sculptures dropping in town.

Long-read alert: we talked to some knowledgeable folks about whether the show's any more thought-provoking than browsing for black market "Balloon Girl" coffee mugs on Etsy — and what Banksy himself (herself? themselves?) could do if he was, indeed, miffed about this travelling exhibition, which has been trotting his stuff around the globe, supposedly without his blessing. Under the Canadian Copyright Act, turns out he could have some say — but it's a real Catch-22 for someone famous for being anonymous.

This'll look nice when it's framed. (Etsy)

While Banksy himself was having his artwork rejected, then accepted, by the Royal Academy summer exhibition, elsewhere around the CBC network, the CBC Toronto team asked the show's curator what Banksy himself would think of people paying $35 to see The Art of Banksy. As for what the people themselves think of that pricetag, this local artist took it upon himself to protest the exhibition. He's hanging his own paintings on the fence across the street from the venue. Over on q, they revisited that age-old (decades-old?) mystery of cracking the artist's secret identity.

But then, the more pressing (and more hilariously bizarre) talking point is probably this security footage from inside the Art of Banksy exhibition. One of the artworks, "Trolley Hunters," is now missing, and a Toronto Police video appears to catch the alleged perp in the act, tip-toeing away, Hamburglar-style, into the night.

(YouTube/Toronto Police Service)

If it gets you hopping down a rabbit hole of art-heist videos on YouTube, you're not alone. (Seriously, half the office did the same thing on Thursday.) So here's one to get you started — plus the dance scene from the first art heist movie to come to our minds right this second, the '90s-mom favouriteThe Thomas Crown Affair. You're going to need something as smoo-oo-ooth as Rene Russo and Pierce Brosnan to wash down all that amazingly awkward thievery.

Do you wanna dance, or do you wanna dance? (Giphy)

Special shoutout to new subscribers Julia Costa and Bev Walker, who shared their favourite places to discover art online (MOMA app for the win), and the question we posed last week still stands!

Who's the last artist you discovered online? Email us your tips any time — we'd love to hear them.

On to some bonus links!

  • This artist's hair has a mind of its own — and hands, and feet and teeth and even some super jacked biceps. Seriously, though, Laetitia Ky sculpts with her own braids to come up with fiercely political — and yeah, amazingly goofy — pics. 
  • Hair was the subject of Émilie Régnier's breakthrough photo series, but i-D recently caught up with the Canadian artist to talk about another project, Leopard: portraits of socialites, strangers, tattoo artists, you name it, all bound by their love of a certain animal print.
  • Toronto's historic Massey Hall is getting ready for a massive revitalization project, and starting Monday, they're selling the theatre's current seats. View-obstructing pillar not included.

You've got to see this

(Dave Krovblit)

Eggsplosive! - Watch Dave Krovblit egg-splain this beautiful but deadly art project before we make any more dad jokes.

(CBC Arts)

Is this the future of ballet? - The National Ballet has been dancing into the 21st century by telling a throwback story. Frame by Frame is a tribute to film pioneer Norman McLaren.

(Historica Canada)

Love: a part of our heritage - Go behind the scenes of Canada's first LGBTQ Heritage Minute. Directed by Stephen Dunn, it dropped this week, just in time for Pride Month.

Follow this artist - Yi Stropky @chinatown_stropky


Heart what you see? Get in line. Then find out why this Vancouver-based tattoo artist is in such high demand.

Have any questions, story tips, typo catches, videos of lizards eating ice cream?

Hit us up over email any time, and we'll do our best to respond.

Until next week!


CBC Arts

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Leah Collins

Senior Writer

Since 2015, Leah Collins has been senior writer at CBC Arts, covering Canadian visual art and digital culture in addition to producing CBC Arts’ weekly newsletter (Hi, Art!), which was nominated for a Digital Publishing Award in 2021. A graduate of Toronto Metropolitan University's journalism school (formerly Ryerson), Leah covered music and celebrity for Postmedia before arriving at CBC.


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