Artists in Turnpike Lane have spoken of how the furore over a piece of graffiti has turned a patch of wall into a “shrine-like space”.
US auction house Fine Art Auctions Miami last night withdrew from sale a Bansky piece removed from the wall of Whymark Avenue’s Poundland supermarket a week ago.
Since it was taken, several pieces of graffiti have appeared commenting on the removal.
One, a rat holding a sign reading “Why?”, is similar to earlier pieces by Banksy, but the most recent is an image of a mouthless nun with a red star over one eye and a heart to one side.
Residents, politicians and artists had campaigned for the sale to be stopped and a statement from the Turnpike Art Group described the huge sense of collective achievement felt by those involved when two Banksy items were withdrawn.
It read: “From the perspective of the Turnpike Art Group, this really says much about what people value, even on a subliminal level.
“Art is good. Particularly when it is accessible by all.”
It is not clear if either of the larger two pieces in London are the work of Banksy, who does not readily confirm or deny his work.
The art group compared using the space to being allowed to run out on the pitch at Wembley.
The statement went on: “The very real 'absence' of our Banksy has fostered an almost shrine-like space.
“Although the new art is nowhere near as effective or well thought through, it does provide a canvas, which is what TAG advocate. Artists can pay homage to their mentor. All we ask is they do it with respect to the environment.”