Banksy piece in honour of NHS Covid heroes sold for £17m in record auction

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A Banksy piece created by the mystery painter in honour of Covid NHS heroes sold for a record breaking £16.7m.

The artwork features a young boy kneeling down playing with his toys, choosing to ditch Batman and Spider-Man in favour of a caped nurse.

Titled "Game Changer," the nurse can be seen wearing a mask, a nod to the battle NHS staff endured on the frontline of the pandemic.

Banksy made the work as a thank you the health service and delivered it out of the blue to Southampton general hospital in May 2020.

It had hung in the corridor of the hospital as a daily morale boost, but it has since been replaced by a copy, with the original listed on Christie's Auctioneer website.

Bidding started at a whopping £2.5 – £3.5m but after a lengthy internet and phone session, the hammer came down at a staggering £14.4m.

With fees, the seller will be paying an eye-watering £16.7m for the work of art.

The sell makes it a record-breaking sum for Banksy, whose last piece of the House of Commons sold for £9.9m in 2019.

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Christie's said all proceeds from the sale will go to healthcare organisations and charities across the UK, with hope the funds will enhance NHS care.

It also said it would donate a significant portion of the buyer's premium to those causes, but did not disclose a figure.

The sell makes it a record-breaking sum for Banksy, whose last piece of the House of Commons sold for £9.9m in 2019.

  • Banksy artwork 'saved from death sentence' as collector buys it for 'six-figure sum'

Titled "Devolved Parliament," Banksy's piece showed chimpanzees as MPs in the House of Commons chamber.

The work came ahead of Boris Johnson's win as leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister of the UK.

It is said to represent the difficulty Theresa May encountered when trying to negotiate Brexit with the House of Commons and the EU.

  • Banksy
  • NHS

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