Archives for posts with tag: Banksy

I’m no film reviewer but I’ve seen a few recently which have surprised me so I though I’d write about them.

Exit Through the Gift Shop, a Banksy Film. My only preconception of this was that it was going to be about Banksy. This was one of the main reasons that I didn’t get around to watching it sooner. Not because I don’t like Banksy, I just think there are more interesting street artists. This film proves that in a good way. It’s not just about Banksy, it is a cleverly put together and a film which I will definitely watch again.

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. This film is dark in many ways, but it’s one that is so creepy that it has stuck with me. The ending was bizarre however, there is no other way to describe it. I’m not sure it worked either, even in a bizarre way. The final scene is more in-keeping with the tone and recovers it.

One film which has done really well at the Golden Globes (if you care about anything other than Ricky Gervais’ opening monologue) is ‘The Social Network’ I was not hooked at all from the start, maybe it wasn’t sensational enough for me! Or maybe the story has been in the papers enough that a film seems a bit much and didn’t really add any new perspective to the narrative. If you don’t know the story it’s a great way to see it.

[I will almost certainly never write about films again. Lucky you]

So I went to ‘The Bristol Museum v Banksy’ last week as I was passing through Bristol. Pretty much everyone I know has heard of the exhibition, regardless of their interest in street/modern art, and had either been or wanted to go. I had attempted to avoid the press coverage and pictures so that I would be seeing it for the first time, however living in the South West made this almost impossible. (If you haven’t been you can see lots of stuff here)

We got there about 4 on Tuesday and queued for about 10 minutes to get in. Although the queue was fast moving we continued to be in it the entire way round his main exhibition rooms. I hadn’t managed to avoid as much of the media coverage as I’d wanted to and felt like I’d seen everything already, bits I hadn’t seen appeared to be re-makes of previous pieces, and other pieces dotted around the gallery were samey edits of old masters’ paintings.

I really wanted to enjoy it but it was overcrowded, both with people and banksy’s work, I came away glad that I’d seen it but not inspired like I had done a few months ago after visiting the ‘Crimes of Passion’ exhibition, at the Royal West Of England Academy,  also in Bristol.

There were many middle-aged, women who were very obviously enjoying every piece immensly. So if this is Banksy’s target audience then he has clearly achieved his goal. I assumed that the Guardian loved it, but even they didn’t. For anyone who has seen or taken a vague interest in street art before may find it watered down and perhaps slightly surreal – Is Banksy a highly skilled 3D craftsman? The Tweety Pie model was very detailed, every hair is visible, but before we have only seen his stencil work… Did he even do it all? For any other artist (Damien Hirst for example) this wouldn’t be quite as shocking, we know other people help orchestrate their work, but I thought Banksy was against all this high-class art nonsense.

Amid all the conspiracies and secrecy he is without a doubt the graf artist with the highest public profile, but does he deserve this? One thing he is extremely good at however, is keeping his identity a secret.