Why is Banksy so famous?

Ask a random passerby to name a graffiti artist and chances are he or she will mention Banksy. The satirical works of this anonymous artist are world famous, but why actually? In this blog post we try to discover why he appeals to the imagination. But let's start from the beginning: who is Banksy anyway?

The secret of Banksy

To whom Banksy exactly is, it remains to be guessed. We know he comes from Bristol and according to author Tristan Manco he was trained as a butcher. In the late 1980s he became active in the graffiti scene, which maintained close ties with other artists. It wasn't long before Banksy conquered other cities in Britain. His murals have also been found in Spain, Italy, the US, Palestine, Mali and Australia.

In the film Exit Through The Gift Shop, he is followed in the run-up to an exhibition in Los Angeles, but the viewer is hardly aware of who Banksy really is. Some film critics even think that the entire documentary was made to create confusion about the identity of Banksy. Whether or not that is the case, we still do not know who is behind his pseudonym.

Banksy painting through Graffitinetwerk

Why Banksy is so popular

Let's not get around it: a part of Banksy's popularity can of course be devoted to the mystery of his identity. We are curious creatures, but of course that does not fully explain his celebrity. His kicks against holy houses, the quality of his stencils and the fact that celebrities such as Cristina Angelina and 'Brangelina' have bought his works, also contributes to his fame.

Where other artists choose to promote themselves, Banksy lets its art speak for itself. Perhaps more artists should follow this approach. It certainly seems to work fine for Banksy!

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