Banksy is one of the most famous street artists of our time. His real identity has never been confirmed. Although his art has been acclaimed, it has also attracted controversy and opposition from public officials who have accused him of vandalism.
Banksy is a pseudonymous street artist, but also a political activist His street art combines dark humour with graffiti that usually has important social commentary. His work has been featured on many different surfaces in cities throughout the world.
Since his first graffiti days, Banksy has worked with many different materials such as inkjet printers, spray paint cans, markers and brushes; often reflecting the underlying socio-political themes of his work by referencing existing imagery from mass media or popular culture in which he takes aim at consumerism, war, greed and hypocrisy among other targets.
And Banksy has received wide acclaim for his work, which combines dark humour with graffiti done in a distinctive stencilling technique. His work is known for political and social commentary, which has led to some of his works being sold for millions of pounds.
Tristan Manco, an author and graphic designer, wrote a biography of this famous artist thanks to which we know some of the things from his private life. Thanks to ‘The Story of Banksy’, we know that he was born in 1974 and raised in Bristol, England. Of course, since his identity was never confirmed, we cannot know this for sure, but there are signs to suggest that Tristian was correct.
What we do know about him is that he started out as a freehand graffiti artist in 1992, with two other artists known as Kato and Tes. They were inspired by local artists Inkie, 3D, and Nick Walker, who painted walls around the country at this time. Banksy’s first commissions included designing a huge mural on the side of a garage in Portishead (1994), an advertisement for “Nike SB” shoes in New York City (1997) and an image of a man wearing a gas mask holding flowers while climbing over barbed wire on an Israeli West Bank barrier wall (2004).
Shredding the art
Banksy’s works are sold for millions of pounds. One of his most popular works, the Balloon Girl, was sold for a lot of money; however, soon after the sale was made, a hidden paper shredder inside the frame destroyed the piece in what was later defined as a prank by the author. This caused quite a bit of a shock among the people who attended the auction, and even Banksy himself commented on the act online. There is no doubt that we can expect even greater and more interesting things from him in the future!