Banksy recreation tagged as part of 2009 national graffiti feud

Greater Than's Banksy recreation in London Road North, Lowestoft, was tagged with 'Team Robbo'.

Greater Than's Banksy recreation in London Road North, Lowestoft, was tagged with 'Team Robbo'. - Credit: Greater Than

A recreation of a town's Banksy artwork has been tagged in reference to a decades old feud between graffiti artists. 

Local artist Greater Than recreated the Banksy piece on London Road North, Lowestoft, in December, showing a child building a sandcastle with a crowbar, after the original was removed.

Earlier this week, the protective screen covering the artwork had 'Team Robbo' sprayed over it in capital letters and red paint, in stark contrast to the black and white artwork.

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Graffiti artist Greater Than, has created a similar art piece to the previous Banksy mural which was taken away from the town. - Credit: Greater Than

The incident appears to refer to an apparent feud between Banksy and a London graffiti artist known as King Robbo, which was sparked when Banksy painted over the latter's iconic piece in the capital in 2009.

The pair repeatedly reclaimed the piece over the following weeks, with King Robbo supporters adding their tag to a number of Banksy works around the country over the years.

Gorleston artist Greater Than reproduced the London Road North piece in December after the original, and the wall it was painted on, was removed by the building's Essex-based owners.

banksy artwork gone

A Banksy artwork on Lowestoft high street has been removed from the side of the electrical shop building. PICTURE: CHARLOTTE BOND - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

With his recreation, Greater Than paid homage to the elusive artist, who visited the town as part of his Great British Spraycation series last year, but said he was disappointed for the community following the graffiti.

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He said: "It is a dead war. King Robbo died in 2014. Whoever did this might be anti-Banksy, but it wasn't an original Banksy piece.

"I don't think he cares whether I recreated it or not.

"This doesn't harm Banksy, but it does harm the community. No one wants to see 'Team Robbo' scrawled there.

"The second I stop painting something I become emotionally detached from it and it's no longer my artwork, it's for the community.

"That is what street art is about."

Greater Than completed the recreation after working with the building owners' representatives, but fears for the legacy left behind by Banksy.

He said: "The owners had spent a lot of time cleaning graffiti from the perspex covering the original, and that was part of the reason why they wanted to sell it, as well as the financial reasons.

"I never wanted to fool anyone into thinking this was a Banksy, it was just so people could still see what it looked like.

"The legacy he left is that people think they can do whatever they want anywhere and that is not the case.

"Banksy is able to get away with it because he adds millions to your property value.

"I am a street artist who gets the owners' permission. If anyone else does it without consent they get prison sentences.

"I don't want a 13-year-old to see someone's name scrawled somewhere and think they can do that to a war memorial or anywhere."

The perspex has since been cleaned.