TOX Convicted // Banksy ConTributes // TOXIC // DETOX

By: aspyhole

Jun 23 2011

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Category: Art, Graffiti, Street Art

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As TOX is convicted for seven counts of criminal damage (“So many?!” I hear you cry), Banksy comes up with a fitting tribute to him.

Perhaps London’s most prolific tagger, TOX’s mark can be seen London-wide, but especially on the property of London Transport. While many of his pieces are impressive in that their locations appear unreachable, it is understandable that the British Transport Police want him on lockdown. Having been fined several times before, TOX (as far as I remember the son of a government minister – though do correct me) is no stranger to the courtroom, and has been banned from using the London Underground since 2003. Whether he has adhered to the order and his ASBOs prohibiting from moving round certain areas of London is another story, with many thousands of TOX 0- tags appearing since then.

Interestingly Eine was called upon as an expert witness in TOX’s trial. His statements referred to in the press seem ambiguous as to whether he is supportive of the artist or not. He calls TOX’s tag’s “basic”, and suggests that their simplicity means they could have easily been done by a copycat or a group. If the jury understood the faintest thing about tagging they would have seen right through Eine’s statement, though TOX was cleared on several counts.

Banksy’s tribute to / comment on TOX seems to apply a childish nature to TOX’s tagging, and perhaps tagging in general, something that Banksy and many street artists see as quite apart from the ‘scene’ they reside in themselves.

TOX awaits sentencing, but if the case of R. v Matthew Pease and Others (where the defendants were found guilty of over 100 counts of criminal damage and were sentenced to 2 years imprisonment) is anything to go by, TOX will likely be sentenced to a couple of months imprisonment and asked to pay damages of a few thousand pounds. Though: Wait. And See.


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