Category Archives: The Artist Known as Banksy

Three Rare Banksy Covers.

I have been collecting record and CD covers designed illustrated or handmade by the artist known as Banksy, as well as record and CD covers that use his art since 2007. My list of records and CDs has grown steadily and now totals eighty-one (including a few doubles).

Sometime early on in my search for Banksy covers I saw a list on the Urban Art Association website that pictured a CD that I have been looking for ever since without success. I had a poor quality picture of the cover image and discussed it with a Banksy/street art collector i know. He mailed me a picture of a Banksy painting that formed the background to the CD cover image and I (as is my wont) made an attempt at reproducing the cover and I sent my reproduction to him and within a few short weeks he had located the missing CD. Someday I will provide a picture but not yet…

However, that is not the only find to arrive in recent weeks. In December 2020 another Bansky collector, Tasso von Haussen, alerted me to an Ebay advert for a September 1999 issue of Sleazenation Magazine that had a CD attached. The CD, The Next XI, is a compilation of tracks put together be Wall of Sound Records with cover art by Banksy.

The September 1999 issue of Sleazenation magazine with the The Next XI CD.

The CD inlay from the The Next XI CD compilation.

This is an early Banksy cover that is a great addition to my collection.

I discussed the various covers for Blur’s 2003 Think Tank promo CDs in a recent post and said that I had seen pictures of a rare variation with a baby’s handprint instead of the Petrolhead stamp but never actually seen one and I wondered if it was genuine. Well, now I have a copy.

The Baby hand print promo.

I got it from a collector in Newcastle who, many years ago had bought a lot of the standard Petrolhead promo CDs and found this unusual one among them. So now I have three variations of the Think Tank promo:

Finding the hand print CD cover makes me wonder if there might also be a variation with a baby’s foot print? So — with the help of Photoshop — I made myself one to keep until a real one turns up (if it ever does).

My fake foot print Think Tank foot print cover.


Now I wonder if my collection of record and CD covers by the artist known as Banksy is complete. I have previously said that I have a complete collection, but I have learned the hard way never to say that any collection is complete — something new always turns up as soon as one says one has everything.

Banksy’s Second Principle–Retrospective Exhibition of Works by the Artist Known as Banksy in Genoa, Italy.

Three years ago the Fondazione Roma organised a retrospective exhibition of works by the artist known as Banksy, curated by Stefano S. Antonelli, Francesca Mezzano and Acoris Andipa. I was honoured to be asked to show my collection of Bansky’s record and CD cover art at that show and when the Associazzone MetaMorfosi was planning a new show once again to be curated by Stefano and Acoris, this time at the Palazzo Ducale in Genoa planned to run from 23rd November 2019 to 29th March 2020. Acoris again asked me to lend my record and CD covers to the exhibition.

Stefano Antonelli has entitled the exhibition “Il secundo principio di un artista chiamato Banksy“, which translated means “The Second Principle of the artist known as Banksy“. Okay. But if this exhibition is Banksy’s second principle, what is his first?  Stefano explains in his essay in the beautiful exhibition catalogue.

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The exhibition catalogue.

Banksy’s first principle, according to Stefano, is “If you want to say something and have people listen then you have to wear a mask“. His second principle is “If you want to be honest then you have to live a lie“. And I suppose one should bear that in mind as one views the exhibition–however, I only read the catalogue at breakfast on the morning AFTER I went to the opening.

The exhibition is housed in the Palazzo Ducale’s cellar–eminently suitable for a show of “underground” street art. It is beautifully laid out and contains prints, sculptures and aforisms in addition to my collection of record and CD covers. The works on show have all been lent by private collectors and, as the organisers are at pains to point out in the introduction to the exhibition hall, that it is not authoised by Banksy.

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The introduction to the exhibition.

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General view of the exhibition locale.

The only famous Banksy prints I missed were the Kate Moss series, which Banksy had done in the style of Andy Warhol. And I was reminded of how Banksy really knows his art history as I wandered round the five exhibition rooms. My records and CDs are in Room Five.
Bansky covers

The CDs and single records are shown in an impressively massive black trunk.

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The trunk showing the CD and 7″ covers.

All in all a thoroughly thought out exhibition that I’m very happy to have been a (small) part of. Thank you to Stefano and Acoris for letting me share this experience. But, to return to the exhibition title “Il secundo principio di un artista chiamato Banksy“, I wonder if to be honest, I have to live a lie? This exhibition is an honest retrospective of the work by the artist known as Banksy. But is Banksy living a lie in trying to be honest?