Banksy is a pseudonymous British street artist, political activist, and film director. He is most famous for his satirical street art and subversive epigrams; that combine dark humour with graffiti artwork in a distinctive stencilling style. Despite his global fame, Banksy’s true identity remains unknown.

Credit: BBC

Banksy uses this anonymity to maintain his independence and to focus on the issues he highlights through his art. Some of his most famous works include the “Girl with a Balloon,” “Love is in the Bin,” and “Napalm.”

Welcome to The Banksy Story is a 10-part series by BBC, exploring the history of the global phenomenon of Banksy and the lack of knowledge around his identity.

The segment includes a potentially real snippet Banksy’s voice from 2005. It is taken from the National Public Radio station, “All Things Considered”.  The host asks the speaker, “We assume that you are who you say you are, but how can we be sure?” In response, Banksy replies, “Oh, you have no guarantee of that at all.”

The deceptive and cunning nature of Banksy is an ongoing and exciting element of his art-making. His concepts, however unique, are extremely relatable and newsworthy.

Credit: WIRED

He often depicts what is going on in society and makes a mockery of it. This leads us to question our own realities and what we place importance on.

Who is Banksy?

Credit: IMDb

In 2010’s Exit Through the Gift Shop, we can see a visage and voice of supposedly, the real Banksy. In it, he relates the tale of Thierry Guetta, a videographer who endeavours to document the world of street art. Throughout the film, the visage and voice of Banksy are obscured to prevent identification. The film has been nominated for an Academy Award in the category of documentary, however its authenticity is repeatedly brought into question. To this day, the artist is a complete enigma to the art world.

We have never uncovered who he is, and it is quite likely that we never will. His art is everywhere, from print to the real deal to copycats on the sidewalk. His graffiti-esque style has always been a standout in the industry, along with the mystery around his name.

Is it really his voice and how would we know?

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