Banksy’s Peckham Rock returns to British Museum

Banksy’s Peckham Rock going back on display at the British Museum (Victoria Jones/PA) Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

A Banksy “rock painting” has returned to the British Museum more than 10 years after it was planted there as a hoax.

Entitled Peckham Rock, the painting depicted a primitive man pushing a supermarket trolley.

The work was placed by the anonymous “art terrorist” in one of the museum’s galleries in 2005, three days before its staff were alerted to the piece stuck to a wall in a room of artefacts from Roman Britain.

It is going back on show – this time with the institution’s permission – as part of a new exhibition examining objects which “challenge the official version of events and defy established narratives”.

Curated by Have I Got News For You star Ian Hislop, I Object features over 100 objects from the museum’s vast collection and is accompanied by a three-part BBC Radio 4 series, which begins next week.

The British Museum is also displaying, for the first time since 2012, an “ostracon with a scene of sex” for the show.

The limestone rock features an explicit sketch, drawn by an ancient Egyptian workman, with a mocking inscription reading “a satisfied foreskin means a happy person” in hieroglyphics.

Other items on show will include a pink knitted “pussyhat”, newly acquired by the museum, which was worn at the Women’s March in Washington in 2017 following Donald Trump’s inauguration as US president.

A Roman oil lamp depicts a woman, believed to be Cleopatra, having sex with a crocodile and is thought to have been made as a propaganda piece against the Egyptian ruler.

The Citi Exhibition, I Object: Ian Hislop’s Search For Dissent runs from September 6 2018 to January 20 2019 at the British Museum.