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Banksy exhibit opens in Milan on heels of auction stunt

Visitors take photos with mobile phones of a 2003 limited edition screenprint "Flower Thrower" or "Love Is In The Air" during a press preview of an exhibition of British street artist Banksy, "The Art of Banksy," at the MUDEC, the Museum of Cultures in Milan, Italy, on Nov. 20, 2018.
Visitors take photos with mobile phones of a 2003 limited edition screenprint "Flower Thrower" or "Love Is In The Air" during a press preview of an exhibition of British street artist Banksy, "The Art of Banksy," at the MUDEC, the Museum of Cultures in Milan, Italy, on Nov. 20, 2018.(Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images)

The MUDEC museum in Milan is hosting the first exhibit of street-artist Banksy’s works in an Italian public museum, just weeks after the artist grabbed international attention by partially shredding one of his works at a London auction.

Curator Gianni Mercurio said Tuesday that the stunt boosted the artist’s popularity with the general public but also the art establishment.

Mercurio said that ‘‘this performance and the explosion of prices of works by Banksy has gathered interest from certain mechanisms and people in the art system that had up until now snubbed him.’’

The show, which runs until April 14, is not authorized by the British artist, whose identity remains famously unknown. It comprises about 80 works, including paintings and prints, alongside objects, photographs, videos, and memorabilia.

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Associated Press