Sid Vicious, 2000
Spray-paint, stencil, and acrylic on canvas
92×92 cm (36 1/4 x 36 1/4 inches)
Unique variant from a series
Stencil-signed “BANKSY”, lower right
Artcurial Paris: 5 May 2019
EUR 149,050 / USD 166,265
“I don’t know why people are so keen to put the details of their private life in the public: they forget that invisibility is a superpower”
Working simply with paint and a stencil, Sid Vicious sees Banksy preserve his signature street art process, reenacting it on canvas in a style similar to Pop Art pioneer, Andy Warhol. Warhol’s famous screen-prints often illustrated the faces of well-known celebrities and political figures of grandeur. These paintings are aesthetically comparable with Banksy’s Sid Vicious, whereby the faces of icons, such as Marilyn Monroe, are reproduced in a formation of adjacent squares, amongst vibrant milieus and overlaid with detailing. In contrast to the idolization of these emblematic figures of contemporary culture, Banksy uses this visual to venerate Vicious and his punk ideologies.
Sid Vicious isn’t the only work of Banksy’s that looks to Warhol for inspiration. His works Kate Moss, 2005 and Tesco Value Soup Can, 2004 both reference Warhol’s works and present a reimagined version should they of been made in the UK today. Banksy’s defiant ethos can be said to interlock with Warhol’s, whose incessant reproduction of pop culture imagery was driven by a desire to mock a populous compelled by mass production and consumerism. Such a commentary aligns itself with the satire inherent in the Punk generation who were assertive in declaring their free-spirited exemption from the mainstream digestion of kitsch.