Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan has been long been making waves in the art world. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because he was the creator of the 18-karat golden toilet that was stolen from Bleinheim Palace in England earlier in September. He recently announced he would be showing some of his art in an exhibit.
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Cattelan’s newest work was titled the “Comedian,” and is as simplistic as possible in most people’s eyes. The art piece is simply a banana duct-taped to a wall. That’s it. No fancy double meaning or hidden social protest. Ironically, this newest work just sold for $120,000 at a Miami art gallery.
There were three editions that sold during the same exhibit, CNN reported. It’s unclear if the banana is real or not. If so, it could be one of the few art pieces that disintegrated with time, which would make spending $120,000 more questionable.
Galerie Perrotin, the founder of the Art Basel Miami Beach, explained how Cattelan came up with the idea. “Back then, Cattelan was thinking of a sculpture that was shaped like a banana,” it reads. “Every time he traveled, he brought a banana with him and hung it in his hotel room to find inspiration. He made several models: first in resin, then in bronze and in painted bronze (before) finally coming back to the initial idea of a real banana.”
Before anyone did any bidding on the high-priced object, Perrotin did his best to upsell the art piece by proclaiming the bananas are “a symbol of global trade, a double entendre, as well as a classic device for humor.”
He didn’t go add any further information other than saying that the “Comedian” is a “vehicle of both delight and critique.”
Cattelan’s prior work made headlines around the world when the 18-karat golden toilet he created named “America” was stolen in England. That theft resulted in the arrest of five people.
The one-of-a-kind toilet has yet to be recovered and authorities are still offering a reward to whoever can bring them to it. At this point in time, it is thought that the toilet was more than likely melted down and sold.