Oh No He Didn't! Banksy Wages a Graffiti Art War

LONDON — The elusive artist Banksy has violated one of the graffiti art world's most stringent laws - you don't paint over someone else's work or incorporate it into your own, not without their permission. But during the Christmas holiday Banksy painted over a 24-year-old wall mural located under a bridge in North London. The painting was done by rival graffiti artist Robbo, whose pioneering artwork had previously remained untouched since its creation in 1985.

Banksy's "you got served" move provoked outrage on internet sites like Flickr, where the community overwhelmingly responded in Robbo's favor. Still, Robbo wasn't about to let Banksy win. In an "it's on" retaliatory response, "King Robbo" returned to the bridge four days later to restore his name.

Is the war over or will these artists fight another battle with their spray cans? We'll be watching.

Banksy, Robbo, graffiti art
Graffiti artist Robbo's original 1985 painting under a bridge in Regent's Canal. [Credit: Citrus Topnote, Jr. via Flickr.]

Banksy, Robbo, graffiti art
Banksy waged a graffiti art war by painting over Robbo's work during Christmas 2009.

Banksy, Robbo, graffiti art
Four days later "King Robbo" retaliated against Banksy's spray attack by restoring his name. 


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