5 Facts You Didn’t Know About Banksy

5 Facts You Didn’t Know About Banksy

He has been nominated for an Oscar. He has written books and has made millions from his artwork. He is famous for controversial street art, in the form of stenciled and striking graffiti. One of the most praised artists of this generation is a mysterious person who goes by the pseudonym of Banksy, but no one has confirmed his real name.

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Fact 1: Banksy has been doing graffiti since the early 90s, but it wasn’t until the late 90s that he began to use stencils in almost all of his work. As his street art became more recognizable around London and what is believed to be his hometown of Bristol, his style became more developed.

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Fact 2: It is rumored that his real name is Robin Gunningham, and many refer to him as a modern-day Robin Hood. He donates to charitable organizations that concentrate on research of eye diseases and restoring sight to those who are blind.

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Fact 3: Before becoming famous, Banksy would walk into art galleries and museums and glue his artwork to the walls therein. They would sometimes hang for hours before being removed or falling down. Recently, one of his paintings was scrubbed off of a wall in Clacton-on-Sea, 200 miles east of Bristol, England, due to complaints that it was racist.

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Fact 4: Further imbuing himself into pop culture, he worked on the opening credits of a Simpsons episode in 2010 entitled “MoneyBart.” Also in 2010, Banksy was selected by Time magazine as one of the world’s 100 most influential people. Steve Jobs, Barack Obama and Lady Gaga were also on that list.

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Fact 5: In August of 2005, Banksy traveled to Israel and painted a collection of images on the concrete wall of the West Bank, constructed in an attempt to stop suicide bombers from entering the country. Using stencils, Banksy painted a theme of escape: an alluring image of a young girl floating to the top of the wall via the group of balloons she clutches. He also painted a boy with a ladder leaning against the wall and two children playing with a beach pail and small shovel.

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Some call for Banksy to be identified, but others insist he keep his anonymity. Should he be exposed, or does the mystery make his artwork all the more interesting?

www.huffingtonpost.com www.smithsonianmag.com www.theguardian.com

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