Street Art

I'll be the first to admit that I was never a huge Banksy fan. Sure, what he did seemed cool and all, but I never really looked into it much. Mike found "Exit Through The Gift Shop" on Netflix Instant Play a few weeks ago and I was compliant to watch it. While I may have always respected Banksy and other work of street artists, I finished the documentary with more of an appreciation for it. Of course then I reblogged the picture above and the following quote, and my adoration for him only grew. I know many may see Banksy and other prolific street artists as being cliche, overrated, and maybe even silly, but I'm glad I was able to see through my somewhat closed-off mind and find a new something to value.

 “The people who run our cities don’t understand graffiti because they think nothing has the right to exist unless it makes a profit. The people who truly deface our neighborhoods are the companies that scrawl giant slogans across buildings and buses trying to make us feel inadequate unless we buy their stuff. Any advertisement in public space that gives you no choice whether you see it or not is yours, it belongs to you, it’s yours to take, rearrange and re-use. Asking for permission is like asking to keep a rock someone just threw at your head.” - Banksy

I think the reason the quote above really struck a chord with me is because it is exactly how I feel about the advertising industry. Even in college, I was hesitant and a little resistant to my advertising class simply because I didn't really agree with it. We were told in school to make a list of our core values and morals as far as jobs go. What we would and would not ever do. One of my values was to never work for a company that seemed misleading... to me, the entire advertising industry is misleading. Maybe that seems a little overdramatic but that's truly how I feel. While I may enjoy buying material goods, being told one side of the story in an incredibly overwhelming manner isn't really my cup of tea.

Have any of you seen "Exit Through the Gift Shop?" If so, what did you think of it?
Who are some of your favorite street artists or projects?


  1. Loved that film. :) I still can't decide how much of it is real & how much is a joke... but that's part of the plan I guess. It went about educating the audience as well as entertaining & making a statement all really well fused together.

    The Warhol here in Pittsburgh had a Shepard Fairey exhibit last year & he put up art all over the city. It was fantastic. And I've had a soft spot for him ever since.

  2. I loved that flick, although I kinda found Theirry Guetta, well, annoying...especially at the end. I got the sense that his art just seemed a bit satirical and found it amusing how the public just ate it up. Mr. Brainwash indeed...

  3. I've still not seen Exit Through the Gift Shop, which as a Bristolian is a bit shameful really. I did make it to the Banksy vs The Bristol Museum exhibition last year though which was fantastic, there was a gallery that was just Bansky stuff, and then they'd placed a whole bunch of other stuff around the museum in amongst the normal exhibits some of which blended in amazingly.

    I quite like street art in general, the area of Bristol I live in has at least a half dozen Banksy's that I know of, and I'm sure there's a load I don't know about yet. Plus loads of businesses get various (less well-known) street artists to paint their buildings and whatnot. It's pretty cool living somewhere where there's regular gallery shows for street artists, and where the council have at least some respect for the works that are truly art.

  4. i found out about banksy a few years ago with my husband -he loved him instantly (um, husband loved banksy), and i thought it was really cool too...
    we watched "exit thru the gift shop" a few weeks ago and i found it to be so interesting!! especially how it ended up showcasing that other artist/videographer/crazy dude a lot more than banksy... though what can be expected, i guess :)
    loved the docu, love banksy, love GOOD street art (and by that i mean the pieces that are ART, not just scribbles and gang sign... -_-) and, um, love your blog! :)

  5. I haven't seen this one but I watched another documentary that shows how street art is viewed throughout the world. It's pretty amazing how other countries are much more receptive to it while America isn't at all. I would much rather be forced to look at street art, whether it be some big awesome artistic piece or even not so good scribbles than advertisements for companies and products that just want my money!!

  6. I think the film is a hoax, but that's just my opinion. I don't know if I believe the real Banksy would have let some guy film him but who knows.

    My husband and I (moreso him) are big fans of street art. Check out woostercollective if you haven't already. Neckface is a favorite of his. I especially love the knitting installations that have become so popular.

  7. i didn't even know there was a film until it was too late. i've always been a fan of his, thought it was interesting what he did. (not that i'm a raging political person or anything) will need to watch it!

  8. Exit Through the Giftshop was AMAZING, and I've loved Banksy for years. But after watching that documentary, I now love him even more.

  9. Check out the street art that was done for TAMMS YEAR TEN. Pretty interesting.


  10. Thank you for recommending it! I just put it on my list to watch on Netflix. I'll let you know what I think in a few days.


  11. I had seen some of Banksy's work in New Orleans before I knew anything about him and before I saw "Exit Through the Gift Shop" (I wrote about that here if you wanna check it out:

    Have you seen the photos from his New York installation called "The village petstore and charcoal grill" ?? Very entertaining and thought provoking.

  12. Great post, and yes I agree. Have you seen or heard of British grafitti Nick Walker? I did a little post on my blog about him.I think true graffiti artists, are the silent non-conformists, some of their messages are so subtle, yet so powerful.

  13. I haven't seen the documentary, but I've seen some of Banksy's work in real life, and it always makes me a bit excited when I see them. I think there's such a difference between graffiti and actual street art, and Banksy's work embodies that.

  14. I feel as though I have to defend my marketing degree a little. I agree that we have been overadvertisted and nothing makes me more angry than commercials screaming into my living room. However, advertising does provide a good bit of value for consumers. In a world full of too many options, it helps you find what is relevant (and not relevant) to you by highlighting features, increasing competition, and introducing you to what's new. I think a good compromise would be advertising as art?

  15. I went into viewing Exit Through the Gift Shop with very little knowledge of what the movie or Banksy was about. I really enjoyed it! It's interesting to hear so many people's ideas of it being a hoax. It's very thought-provoking to think back and try to determine whether or not it is. Hoax or not, it was very entertaining.



HEY! Thanks for dropping by. xo KB