We were expecting something spectacular for Banksy's last piece during his New York residency, "Better Out Than In," but the simplicity of his final work is... Just. So. Banksy.
For his last piece in October, Banksy has put up what looks like a tag on a graffiti-covered building in Queens. The trompe l'oeil piece is actually seven painted balloons that spell out "BANKSY!" in comical bubble letters, both mocking and participating in the graffiti bombing that already exists on the Queens location. The tongue-in-cheek gesture is just what we would expect from the Bristol artist, and it sums up his drive as a graffiti artist—asserting himself within the local street art scene, yet maintaining a critical distance from the native writers. It's the perfect end to his month-long residency in the city.
On his website, Banksy finished off his residency with a salutation and a plead for 5Pointz: "And that's it. Thanks for your patience. It's been fun. Save 5pointz. Bye." He also posted the link to a graphic so anyone can make the "official" souvenir shirt of "Better Out Than In."
UPDATE OCT. 31 12:47 P.M. ET: Because the NYPD can't find Banksy, they decide to "arrest" his balloon piece instead.
UPDATE OCT. 31 1:18 P.M. ET: A man who took down the balloons was arrested before the piece was hauled away by the police.
UPDATE NOV. 1 5:21 P.M. ET: According to New York Magazine, the cops are holding Banksy's balloon piece for evidence until "someone can prove they are the owner." Good luck with that, NYPD.