Banksy is a considered a controversial street artist in the world, their work can appear anywhere in the world. Is an England-based street artist/political activist, whose identity has been unknown to the public for about 20 years; only a select few of individuals know of Banksy’s real identity. Some of their signature works sometimes includes a rat, Banksy is more of a stencil graffiti artist. Their work is more know for being dark, cynical, and morbid. They play with objects or signs found on the streets. Banksy’s work is very powerfully down and draws attention to it, one for how quickly and secretive they can have their work done as well as the statement that Banksy makes with their finished product is on display. Like the works they were able to make in Palestine along with the help of Ben Eine.
For Banksy, being straight to the point is on of the qualities that makes their work what brings attention to them. They are very outspoken, unafraid of backlash because their strong belief in drawing attention to important matters. As the Pussy Riot’s put it “It is controversial, it is in bad taste and it makes people think—that’s what art should do.” Any piece of art gets people thinking to try to find an understanding on to why the artist must have created the piece for display; there is always a reason and for Banksy, they just make sure you don’t try guessing what it is from the beginning.
We exist in a state of hyperreality, where little distinguishes the real and the imaginary we have … mistaken the image for the real thing. – Baudrillard’sMoser, K. (2017)
Dismaland was a theme park remake/metaphor of Disneyland in which Banksy got the city council’s approval to use a disused public swimming pool for take on a depressing Disneyland. Banksy then seked help form Baudrillard to be able to go through with the idea. In the Dismaland, the ‘Dismals’, were only made to stand and watch as people entered; they could not laugh, smile or give any customer service to the visitors. Adding to the ‘dismal’ atmosphere that Baudrillard’s and Banksy were trying to go for.
We just built a family attraction that acknowledges inequality and impending catastrophe. I would argue it’s theme parks which ignore these things that are the twisted ones – StaffMoser, K. (2017)
The way that Banksy knows how to play with people’s emotions and grab their attention is what has made Banksy so popular, along with having a secret identity that has been hidden for so long. At times I feel like they have become very mainstream or overhyped but again the reasoning behind their work is what keeps drawing me in. Though they do produce a lot of dark stuff, as some would call it, for the reason being that we are used to the ‘hyperreality’ that Banksy and Baudrillard’s talked about. It seems easier to just hide the pain and reality with things that make one happy, because that’s how we have come to terms with in as a society. Live a happy life, ignore the bad and everything will be fine. But is everything fine?
Moser, K. (2017), Exhuming the “Dismal” Reality Underneath Banal Utopian Signs: Banksy’s Recent Parody of the Disneyfication of the Modern World. J Pop Cult, 50: 1024-1046. doi:10.1111/jpcu.12598