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Banksy Comes to Toronto!



Famed British street artist Banksy has never done any work on Toronto streets before—at least not, it looks like, until now.
Three new pieces in Banksy’s distinctive style have popped up on walls in Toronto over the past two days: one’s near Trinity Bellwoods Park, another’s near Union Station, and a final one’s around the Rogers Centre. (We’ve been asked to keep the exact locations private, lest “bad intentions” lead to them being chipped away and sold.)
Simon Cole, director of Show & Tell Gallery and something of a graffiti expert, is himself convinced that the three are the real thing—”I have it on really good word,” he says, that they are (and he featured them on the Gallery’s blog today). We hear, too, that Banksy is currently in town to coincide with the launch of his film, Exit Through the Gift Shop. Of course, we can’t phone the man himself up to confirm that the pieces are legit, but we’ve got a pretty big hunch that they are.

UPDATES
MAY 10, 9:00 A.M.—We got our hands on four more photos of four more new pieces in Toronto by either Banksy or someone doing an awfully good Banksy impression—one piece in Chinatown, and three more close to the waterfront (but not to each other). The latest additions start in the gallery above, here. Spot any others? Email tips@torontoist.com.
MAY 10, 5:52 P.M.—Just as fast, the pieces are starting to disappear. This one, which was located at Adelaide and Brant, was gone as of this morning:

20100510banksy_gone.jpg
Photo by Nick Kozak/Torontoist.


…and we’ve heard from a few people now (including commenters) that this one, on the back of a sign in the Port Lands, has vanished, too.
MAY 10, 9:38 P.M.—With the CBC now reporting that Banksy’s publicist has confirmed that at least some of the pieces are real work, and with all other evidence pointing in the direction of our earliest hunch, it’s time we ditched the question mark in this article’s original title (“Banksy Comes to Toronto?”) for an exclamation point. We’re as certain as we can be that these works are the real thing.
MAY 13, 12:51 P.M.: You can follow our continuing coverage of Banksy’s Toronto trip—from false sightings to painted-over pieces to, now, our list of where to find each piece—here.
Photos, unless otherwise noted, by Gary Smithson.

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