Banksy’s work may be the most famous street art in the world, but the man who inspired him to first take out his stencils and spray paints in the dead of night was Richard Hambleton. Known as the ‘Godfather of Street Art’, the Canadian first made his mark in the Seventies painting chalk outlines with red blood across numerous North American cities.
But his most famous pieces, and the ones with the clearest links to Banksy, are his Shadowman and Marlboro Man collections of the Eighties. However, despite his growing fame and influence, he’s spent the past 20 years as a recluse in Manhattan.
Until last year, that is. Curated by Vladimir Restoin-Roitfeld and Andy Valmorbida and in association with Giorgio Armani, a retrospective of Hambleton’s work toured the world. The final leg starts in London on 19 November and now includes 25 pieces that have never been seen before. Including ‘Horse & Rider, 2010’ which sees him revisiting the themes of his Marlboro Man era.
The exhibition is being held at The Dairy in London until 3 December and is bound to pull in the crowds. Maybe including a furtive stenciller taking copious notes.