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This is not a photo opportunity

For the first time the most significant images by Bansky will be showcased at Palazzo Medici Riccardi in Florence until 24 February.

No one has ever seen him, nobody knows his face, there are no photos of him: yet BANKSY exists through works of unprecedented ethical, evocative and media power. Originally from Bristol, generically framed within the confines of Street Art, Banksy is the greatest case of popularity for a living artist since the days of Andy Warhol. Banksy has always preferred the horizontal spread of images compared to the creation of unique objects. A lesson borrowed from Andy Warhol with his serial approach and the methodical use of screen printing. The London exhibition Warhol vs Banksy at The Hospital in Covent Garden, produced by Banksy in person, confirms an almost hereditary bond. Banksy is the utmost evolution of Pop Art, the only artist to have merged repetition, hip hop culture, 80s graffiti art and digital media.

Between 2002 and 2009 Banksy published 46 images on paper that he sold through his print house Pictures On Walls in Commercial Rd. (London). The images reproduce some of his well-known street pieces, documenting popular frescoes which have often been removed or stolen, or simply consumed by time.

The Florence exhibition comes from a rigorous selection of the 20 best images, which have made the international success of one of the most complex, ingenious and intuitive artists of our time. An infographic on the chronology of the artist completes the exhibition with the original ‘black books’ – original posters of his exhibitions, counterfeit banknotes and a selection of videos.