Feature in The Market magazine, June 2011
Among other young street artists who are following the masters Banksy and Basquiat, it is worth mentioning the 25-year-old British graffiti and stencil artist, Rich Simmons. He is a very gifted artist who brought public attention to his art when he portrayed Prince William and his then bride to be Kate Middleton, as the punks Side Vicious and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen, in the controversial Future ***King artwork. Not only is he very talented as an artist, he is also exceptionally witty and impertinent. His humorous work shows the obvious heritage left by Banksy on the London street art scene. He will be featured in a street art show in London from 16th June this summer. The show will bring together young artists like Rich Simmons and established artists such as, Nick Walker, Logan Hicks and Crash in a colourful and exciting exhibition.
Our advice is that it is often better to buy an original piece by a young and promising artist, represented by an established and well-respected art gallery that will look after them and follow their career. At the moment, this is what we advise clients and collectors who show interest in street art: 'Buy young, buy new, buy promising'. For example, the aforementioned Rich Simmons has just finished a series on the Royal Family, with a cheeky Queen on the throne; it is young and fresh, but also affordable and experts expect to see its value multiplied by five to ten times in the next couple of years. Art Professionals are following Rich Simmons's progress closely. It is a strong possibility that buying his work now could turn out to be a great investment.
By Jean-David Malat, art expert, advisor for art collectors and Director of Opera Gallery London.