Banksy, a street artist whose identity remains unknown, is believed to have been born in Bristol, England, around 1974. He rose to prominence for his provocative stenciled pieces in the late 1990s. Banksy is the subject of a 2010 documentary, Exit Through the Gift Shop, which examines the relationship between commercial and street art.
Striking images characterize Banksy’s artwork, often combined with slogans. His work often engages political themes, satirically critiquing war, capitalism, hypocrisy, and greed. Common subjects include rats, apes, police officers, members of the royal family, and children. In addition to his two-dimensional work, Banksy is known for his installation artwork. Other pieces have drawn attention for their edgy themes or the boldness of their execution. He is known for using copyrighted material and subversion of classic images. Banksy’s worldwide fame has transformed his artwork from acts of vandalism into highly sought-after art pieces.