Street art is a movement figure-headed by Banksy and with his recent film release and all the rampaging publicity that tags along for good measure we briefly reflect on what has become a massive genre in the early 21st century and seek where it goes next.
Over the last few years Street Art has not only become big as a potential art movement, its fan base and a much wider audience of art collectors have embraced it wholly and with it embraced the new.But it doesn’t appear to be stopping, it’s merely adapting, as we all have, to changes in our society.
As collectors and fans we still desire that kudos-granting element of discovering the next Banksy, an aspect that has ferociously fuelled the rise in street art and driven it through the auction house door – an aspect on its own that has truly yet to develop fully.
But whilst we have seen some brilliantly skilled and visionary artists emerge from the street scene like Banksy, Faile, Jose Parla and Adam Neate amongst others, the post-recession scene is likely to continue to want to feed off quality and for newer artists the challenge of having to produce their own thing compete.
As street art moves forward certain key aspects have changed within. Street artists are significantly more aware of the art market now and there appears, more than ever, to be a real three-ring-circus evolving between artist, gallery, and the street. All three are using each other now whereas previously it seemed more the case of galleries championing the new in order to generate the all important quick buck.
Ultimately street art, like all art, requires an audience and it is this that will drive the movement onwards as audiences continue to grow demand for more venues and outlets to supply the demand will emerge.
The next big step is the auction houses, and with rumours circulating of big purchases made by Phillips de Pury at the recent Mr Brainwash show in New York, is this an indicator that as economies strengthen the auction houses are going to embrace cutting edge work.