Last year, Melbourne’s Art Series Hotels offered guests the chance to try and steal a work by notorious UK street artist, Banksy.
The promotion was swiftly highjacked by social marketing strategist Maura Tuohy who Danny Ocean’d the loot by pretending she was a PR lead from campaign agency Naked Communications.
Due to her speed, the comp doubled down and offered guests yet another chance to steal a Banksy (this time “Pulp Fiction” pictured above) a task which has since proven difficult. Attempts to steal the work have included re-wiring internal security cameras, posing as hotel staff and tradesmen, distracting security with complaints and scantily clad women, and one man’s attempt to unhinge the piece with a broomstick. In the end though, all attempts on the $4000 prize were foiled and the artwork has since been donated to Crime Stoppers.
Peter Sprott, Crime Stoppers Executive Director seemed please with the outcome: “We want people to report crime when they see it, as we can’t assume that all criminals will be as inept as the people who tried to steal this ‘Pulp Fiction’ piece. We will be auctioning off this work of art with the much needed proceeds going to the prevention and reporting of crime.”
Will Deague, CEO of Art Series Hotel said “Although it’s been a wonderful exercise for the hotel group, our night staff in particular are glad the Banksy has gone. Thanks to everyone who’s stayed with us over summer, and for the brave souls who had a crack at stealing the art. We sincerely wish Crime Stoppers well and hope they raise significant funds with this piece of art.”