If you’re wandering the Upper West Side, where are the Museum of Natural History, The New York Historical Society, Zabar’s, Barney Greengrass — or, maybe you’ve gone to the adjacent Goodwill Thrift Shop and are just cruising around — you might consider sauntering along 79th Street between Amsterdam and Broadway.
For a moment in 2013, the graffito produced by Banksy installed there on the north side near 227 West 79th, “Boy With a Hammer” was one of the most sought after street art observer’s destinations in New York.
It depicts a boy playing a carnival strong man game, and is of the style deployed by Banksy that takes advantage of street hardware and fixtures by adding a graphic element tying them together, creating a new ‘whole’.
Immediately following its discovery, “Boy With a Hammer” was covered with a sheet of plexiglass by Leon Zabar, owner of the nearby buildings and stores that bear his name.
For a month that year, Banksy installed about thirty pieces around the boroughs, and many, if not most, have been ‘repurposed’ into their environment. This one is an exception.