Banksy is the pseudonym of a “guerrilla” street artist known for his controversial, and often politically themed, stenciled pieces.
Banksy’s identity remains unknown but started his career in Bristol with graffiti gang DryBreadZ Crew.
His early work was mostly freehand but on occasions he used stencils but started using stencils predominantly because it allowed him to finish his art in a shorter time avoiding being caught.
As his signature style developed he became more widely recognized around Bristol and in London.
Banksy’s artwork is characterized by striking images, often combined with slogans. His work often engages political themes, satirically critiquing war, capitalism, hypocrisy and greed. Common subjects include rats, apes, policemen, members of the royal family, and children. In addition to his two-dimensional work, Banksy is known for his installation artwork. One of the most celebrated of these pieces, which featured a live elephant painted with a Victorian wallpaper pattern, sparked controversy among animal rights activists.
Other pieces have drawn attention for their edgy themes or the boldness of their execution. Banksy’s work on the West Bank barrier, between Israel and Palestine, received significant media attention in 2005. He is also known for his use of copyrighted material and subversion of classic images. An example of this is Banksy’s version of Monet’s famous series of water lilies paintings, adapted by Banksy to include drifting trash and debris
Banksy’s worldwide fame has transformed his artwork from acts of vandalism to sought-after high art pieces. Journalist Max Foster has referred to the rising prices of graffiti as street art as “the Banksy effect
In 2013, Banksy took to the streets of New York City. There he pledged to create a new piece of art for each day of his residency. As he explained to the Village Voice, “The plan is to live here, react to things, see the sights—and paint on them. Some of it will be pretty elaborate, and some will just be a scrawl on a toilet wall.
He is one of my favourite artists and so iconic. he has come from a small town graffiti artist to an international icon.