Less than a week after it appeared on the northwest corner of 14th Street and Sixth Avenue, the rat stenciled by graffiti artist Banksy on a former bank building’s exterior clock has been removed.
On Tuesday afternoon, workers were seen detaching the clock face with the work of art on it from the building. Somewhere, Banksy—whose art is often, if not always, a commentary on greed and social discontent—is laughing.
Commercial real estate developer and building owner Gemini Rosemont confirmed to Curbed that it ordered the artwork to be taken down. A spokesperson for the company said that the clock has been placed in storage ahead of the building’s scheduled demolition. They also noted that Gemini Rosemont is “in the process of examining all of our options before making a decision about next steps” regarding the artwork.
Demolition plans were filed for the site in October 2017, with new building plans following in December 2017. The site is poised to give rise to a 13-story residential building with 45 apartments designed by ODA New York.
In the last two weeks Banksy has also bestowed on New York new work that honors imprisoned Turkish artist Zehra Dogan on the Bowery mural wall, as well as a piece of pointed commentary against real estate developers on Coney Island Avenue in Midwood, Brooklyn. The artist is also rumored to have created a mural in Harlem, but hasn’t verified that with a post on their Instagram account.
A tipster just sent me video of workers getting set to remove the rat race #Banksy off 14th and 6th. The building owner reportedly sent them. Of all the pieces, I would’ve bet money that one would’ve lasted the longest. pic.twitter.com/cxTrlxhyOh— Bucky Turco (@buckyturco) March 20, 2018
So sad, another Banksy comes down for the collector, but not for the public! pic.twitter.com/t3TeG8J58O— Max (@mobilepalooza) March 20, 2018