As the title (and photo) insinuates, the mysterious Banksy is the Batman of street art. His work, by definition graffiti, by practice high art, expresses themes of existentialism, anti-capitalism, and anarchism. Like the aforementioned vigilante superhero, Banksy’s medium, however universally regarded as brilliant, has also been referred to as “art terrorism” and, inherently vandalism. He is just as beloved as he is reviled.
And, with an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary film for his directorial debut, Exit Through the Gift Shop: A Banksy Film, the artist is certainly a hot topic as of late.
A nomad, leaving poignant and funny portraits in his wake, Banksy’s unique style has most recently been seen adorning various pieces of property around Los Angeles.
The pièce de résistance?
Banksy decided a billboard for The Light Group, poised over one of the most famous gas stations on the strip, just across the road from the Director's Guild - Norm’s 76 - was missing a few things, and decided to add his unique touch to finish it up. As pictured, a couple of Banksy’s “friends” schmooze and debauch it up with the seriously skeletal model from the campaign (and as an aside, someone needs to get that girl a sandwich).
Apparently the billboard company was none too thrilled about this, and purportedly sent workers to take the art down.
According to TMZ, The Light Group was thrilled with Banksy’s little additions, and “extremely pissed” that it was removed. The representative had this to say:
“It's our billboard that got tagged .. it’s not their billboard ... CBS clearly has ZERO appreciation for art!!!”
Three exclamation points!
And added, “We were flattered Banksy tagged on our ad -- it was epic.”
Pictured: Totally true-to-life recreation of Banksy fleeing the scene of the "crime", as rendered by Emma Claire Goodman (Banksy helped, too)