Former Banksy collaborator Ben Eine to open Virgin Atlantic exhibition

Eine: “You can't be a punk all your life”

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The Independent Culture

High art is given whole new meaning this month as British artist, Ben Eine (above), exhibits his artwork in the first ever commercial art gallery in the air. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class air passengers between London and New York have the chance to buy bespoke artwork alongside their duty-free G'n'Ts.

Ten of his new pieces are currently on display in the Upper Class Clubhouses of London Heathrow, New York JFK and Newark airports. Passengers are able to browse images of the pieces mid-air via their inflight entertainment system before, should they feel so inclined, placing an order with the cabin crew.

Graffiti artist and former Banksy collaborator Eine is known for his vibrant open-air and open-access projects such as Alphabet Street, in which he painted over Middlesex Street in east London with murals and lettering.

Does Eine worry about his change from the street to the elite, from the estate to the establishment, especially at a time when many families are struggling to pay the weekly shopping bill and even economy-class air travel is out of the question? “You can't be a punk all your life,” says Eine. “Twenty years down the line, Bansky's been put up for an Oscar and I've got a painting in the White House. We're getting older and we can let the young kids be the dangerous ones.”

The Gallery in the Air runs until 28 February (