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She Was Selling the House. Then Came the Banksy Mural

The artwork complicates things a little
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 14, 2020 2:55 PM CST

(Newser) – Banksy's latest mural has delayed a homeowner's plans to sell in England after it recently appeared on the house's exterior wall. The elusive British street artist's piece—titled "Aachoo!!"—depicts an elderly woman sneezing, sending her dentures flying out of her mouth. It's painted on the side of the house on a steep street in the southwestern city of Bristol. The creation was discovered on the wall of the semidetached house on Thursday. British media reported that the owners, who had previously put a "sold" sign outside, were pulling out of the sale because Banksy's art could send the property's value soaring. However, Nick Makin told the BBC on Saturday that it wasn't true his mother, Aileen Makin, had taken the $450,000 house off the market.

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"When you wake up to tabloids saying the house is now worth [more than $6 million] you've got to think about what you're doing," he said. "It does increase the value ... but it’s not changing anything in terms of the house sale for us," Makin said. He said the sale has been put on hold for 48 hours as the family tries to ensure the artwork would be protected, either by requiring it remain in the deed of the house or having an agreement that only a museum or the Bristol City Council would be permitted to remove it. Clear acrylic now covers the artwork, and the family has put an alarm system in place. "It's actually cost us money," Makin says. Banksy has posted the piece on his website and Instagram page and his publicist confirmed he created the artwork, the AP reports. He began his career spray-painting buildings in Bristol.

(Read more Banksy stories.)

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