54. Banksy (British b. 1974)
Have a Nice Day
Screenprint on wove paper edition 235/500
34 x 98.7 cm

est. $40,000 - 60,000
Fetched $105,000
Relative Size: Have a Nice Day
Relative size

This work is accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity from Pest Control

In one of the first ever screenprints released by Banksy, the artist portrays law enforcement in a bold and striking way in Have a Nice Day. Twenty seven military or riot police are depicted in a single, intimidating line. In the centre of the group is a grey and black tank, underneath which the words Have A Nice Day are written.

The police are kitted out in black riot gear, marching in unison against an unseen threat or in fact towards the viewer. The faces of the police, which in reality would be covered with protective visors, are covered with bright yellow acid-house style smiley faces; a motif we see fairly regularly in Banksy prints, particularly when it comes to portraying figures that use fear as a means of control.

Whether or not Banksy intended Have a Nice Day to intimidate or amuse, the artwork certainly speaks both to the idea that the police force are not all they seem, perhaps even hiding behind their smiles.