Thursday, July 24, 2008

banksy unmasked?

I refuse to believe that one of my heroes, Banksy, has been unmasked. His paradoxical parodying of commercial culture has intrigued me for years (although he lost some esteem when the Jolie-Pitt team bought some of his works), and, although I think it is more likely that there are multiple Banksys, I refuse to believe that this artist is a tangible being. He's an idea. You can't unmask an idea. Shame on any reporters who seek out his identity. That's just anti-art.

[Side note: When I was in London last summer, I was unnerved by a man on the streets who was selling Banksy pieces. They were canvased photographic duplications, and it irritated me that a) Banksy would not receive any profit from them and that asshole would, and b) Banksy's work isn't meant to be sold. At a market, I looked at photographs of his public art, but I didn't buy any. They lacked the aura of the originals. His art was denied purpose in reproduction. Perhaps Banksy was planning on ironic commercial success, or at least chuckled maniacally when it happened, but I will have no part of that.]


erin. said...

Someone on the news team has been watching 'V for Vendetta". I agree with you, there are many Banksy's. There have been many unauthorized Banksy exhibitions. People keep trying to authorize it, but that's exactly what he's working against.

carrie said...

that picture came out quite some time ago (2 years?) and was pulled off the website that had it.... interesting.

keyser soze said...

To Carrie: Why was it pulled off the website? Was it an anti-Banksy establishment that sought to clean up our "series of tubes" from anarchist graffiti? This is one of my favorite Banksy pieces. I totally appeals to the geek in me.

To Erin: I know. I went to one of the unauthorized exhibits in London. It was a Banksy-Warhol exhibit, and even the brochures had snippets from letters that Banksy wrote about not authorizing the exhibit. It was very strange. His work is public so he doesn't own them, so he can't really stop anyone from displaying his art... in a gallery, as opposed to a pub alleyway.