On Monday, December 15, 2014, Julien’s Auctions will host its third bi-annual Street Art auction featuring the sale of Banksy’s “Hollywood Rat Pack” series, a trio of his iconic rat stencils executed on the walls of the Hollywood apartment where he crashed during his first Los Angeles exhibition “Existencilism,” which was held at the 33 1/3 Gallery in 2002.
The largest example from the series, “Graffiti Rat” (Est. $30,000 to $50,000), depicting a rat with a paintbrush in hand having just scribbled a meandering black line across the kitchen wall, was featured in Banksy’s own publication of definitive works “Wall and Piece” (Century, 2005), and the little black book “Cut it Out” (Weapons of Mass Distraction, 2004). The published photograph shows “Graffiti Rat” perched above a gas stove with a bottle of Bombay Sapphire gin standing on the counter nearby, with several shots missing. Versions of the second stencil, “Menace Rat” (Est. $25,000 to $35,000), depicting a cigarette smoking rodent cutting through the floor with a saw, are also featured in the publication “Wall and Piece” as well as the little black book, “Existencilism” (Weapons of Mass Distraction, 2002). The third rat in the “Hollywood Rat Pack” series, “Action Rat” (Est. $25,000-$35,000), reportedly the only known example of this stencil, fittingly created in the entertainment capital of the world, depicts a rat holding a film production clapperboard, eagerly waiting for the director to call “Action!”.
The sale will include additional stellar works such as “Jack” (Est. $12,000 to $14,000), a rare portrait of Jack Nicholson, created by leading guerilla artist Alec Monopoly, consisting of a wheat paste sheet frenetically embellished with acrylic and aerosol; “Seven Shark Show” (Est. $4,000-$6,000), a kaleidoscopic swirl of knife wielding women and gape-mouthed sharks created by the highly sought after Shark Toof; “This USA Can’t Happen” (Est. $8,000-$12,000), a black aerosol stencil depicting “cowboy” Communist Kim Jong-Un riding a herd of missiles toward America, a political lambast executed on Oxford Street in London by the secretive street artist Bambi, whom the press has branded the female Banksy.
Also included are four works by the controversial artist Sabo, in which celebrity liberals are criticized as “Obama Drones” (Est. $1,000-$2,000 each). Rene Gagnon, the veteran artist whom even Banksy felt was worthy of copying, will also be promoted via his piece “Bomb Games” (Est. $2,000-$3,000), a dark scene depicting a pair of children playing catch with a bomb. Further highlighting the presentation will be works by Shepard Fairey, Alec Monopoly, Risk, Retna, Trust Icon, Annie Preece, Moncho1929, Aero, Nuke, Elika Burns, Asylm, Thanks One, Louis Carreon, Jason Woodside, and more.