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Banksy’s ‘ex-girlfriend’ donates never-before-seen artwork to MediaCity exhibition


A woman who claims to be Banksy’s former girlfriend has lent a collection of unseen artwork to an upcoming exhibition at MediaCity in Salford.

Among the pieces are handmade birthday cards, leaflets and an A painting for her corset shop in Bristol which she claims the anonymous graffiti artist painted for her while they were together from 1994 to 1998.

The famous street artist is said to have emerged from the Bristol underground scene where he painted one of his first major works, The Mild Mild West, depicting a teddy bear throwing a Molotov cocktail at the police.

Banksy’s artwork Girl With Balloon before it tore apart after selling for over £1million at auction (Sotheby’s/PA)

The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, said she donated six works of art to the traveling exhibition, The Art of Banksy, to give the public the chance to see them for the first time.

Michel Boersma, curator and producer of the exhibition, said: “Being offered these wonderful and unknown works by Banksy was surprising and really exciting.

“I couldn’t believe what I was reading when the email suddenly appeared in my inbox two weeks ago. If true, these were completely unknown and very personal works by Banksy .

“We then established the authenticity of the owner and the works she offered. While speaking with her, many details about the early life of the now world-famous artist were shared.

“Fascinating little anecdotes about her and their life at the time. The six additional pieces have now arrived at the exhibition and are ready for public viewing for the first time.

The Art of Banksy exhibition, which will feature 145 authenticated works including prints and canvases, is due to open at MediaCity, Salford on October 21 and close on January 8.

The traveling art exhibition, which has ended its stay in London, is not authorized by the artist and all works are on loan from private collectors.

Among the collection are works from 2002 to 2017, including pieces that brought the artist international recognition such as Girl With Balloon (2002).

The 1,200 square meter site also includes Flower Thrower (2003), Rude Copper (2002) and Brace Yourself (2010).