I have always been a big fan of Banksy, the anonymous graffiti artist. I don’t want to get into the rights or wrong of graffiti, I can see both sides. Not only do I like the ‘art’, (and it is art – an expression), I like the political and topical statements the graffiti makes. This artist featured in an essay of mine called ‘Rage Against the Machine’ (yes, that’s right – recently been in the charts at No. 1. depriving poor Joe Mcelderry of his X Factor Christmas number 1. ) I may try to find this and put it on my new ‘Bookstains’ blog. It features other artists who have ‘raged against the machine’ (I’m talking about the conventional Art machine here by the way – that not everyone wants to join).
Nobody knew for sure the real identity of Banksy the artist, though it has now been revealed. He was born in Bristol, UK in 1974 according to information in Wikipedia. Banksy started off as an aerosol graffiti artist, but then started to use stencils a lot because they take a shorter. Time is of course the essence when you are a graffiti artist. Though no one knows where he will strike next, Banksy has had quite a few exhibitions.
One that caused a lot of controversy in 2003 was ‘Turf Wars’. This exhibition, held in a warehouse was disrupted when an animal rights person chained themselves to railings in protest of the artist painting the animals (literally). The RSPCA had deemed the conditions suitable, but the exhibition was cut short.
Banksy likes to draw attention to social issues through his art (and it is art). Subjects like homelessness, global warming and War are among some of the social commentary and statements he makes. He uses symbols like rats, gas masks, Jesus and even art historical references. He subverts popular figures like Mickey Mouse and Ronald MacDonald…….. climbs into zoos, travels the world and can strike anywhere!
Banksy also likes to infiltrate art galleries, surreptitiously putting a piece of his own work up. One piece (a picture he bought from a charity shop and subverted into a statement by stencilling police tape onto the rural picture) managed to hang on Tate Britain’s wall before it fell off and was then discovered.
Excellent site for this artist’s work HERE
Banksy’s own website HERE
Who is Banksy? HERE’S one theory that’s been around for ages and sadly appears to be true. Spoilsports!