A Banksy painting that shows the House of Commons filled with chimpanzees is to go up for auction, where it is expected to fetch up to £2m.
The artwork, named Devolved Parliament, was unveiled 10 years ago as part of the Bristol artist’s exhibition Banksy vs Bristol Museum.
It features rows of apes sitting in the Commons wearing aprons and carrying the inscription, “Laugh now, but one day we’ll be in charge”.
The piece went back on show at Bristol Museum earlier this year to mark the 10-year anniversary of that exhibition, as well as the original Brexit deadline of 29 March.
Devolved Parliament will be auctioned at Sotheby’s in London on 3 October and is expected to sell for between £1.5-£2m.
It will be on display to the public from 28 September.
Alex Branczik, European head of contemporary art at Sotheby’s, described the mysterious artist as “a modern-day Voltaire”.
He added: “Regardless of where you sit in the Brexit debate, there’s no doubt that this work is more pertinent now than it has ever been, capturing unprecedented levels of political chaos and confirming Banksy as the satirical polemicist of our time.”
The auction comes nearly a year after Banksy’s Girl With The Balloon self-destructed as the gavel came down at Sotheby’s, becoming the newly named Love Is In The Bin.
The painting was shredded, thought to be by a remotely activated mechanism in the frame.
Moments before, the winning bid of £860,000 (£1,042,000 including buyer’s premium) was made by phone – well over the estimate of between £200,000-£300,000.
Banksy posted on Instagram after Devolved Parliament went on display in Bristol in March.
He wrote: “Devolved Parliament. I made this ten years ago.
“Bristol museum have just put it back on display to mark Brexit day.”
He ended the post by saying: “Laugh now, but one day no-one will be in charge.”
When the piece was first unveiled in 2009, the artist said: “You paint 100 chimpanzees and they still call you a guerrilla artist.”