Mystifying Banksy: 5 Common Myths about the Elusive Artist

Mystifying Banksy: 5 Common Myths about the Elusive Artist
Photo credit: Banksy /

Banksy is rightly one of the most famous incognitos in the contemporary world of art. Despite an overwhelming success, no one has seen nor heard him. Each year, his figure becomes even more powerful yet obscure. This is part of the reason why Banksy means different things to different people. And myths and legends about the elusive artist are partly to blame for that. So what are they?

Mystifying Banksy: 5 common myths about the elusive artist

1. Banksy was arrested and his identity revealed

In 2014, Banksy was reportedly arrested and his identity was revealed as Paul Horner, widely known as a “hoax artist.” Well, Horner fabricated it, but many lapped it up.

2. Banksy is Robin Gunningham or Robert del Naja

Banksy is associated with many celebs, but especially with Robin Gunningham and Robert del Naja. In fact, no solid proofs are confirming such claims.

3. Banksy is a woman

Banksy is not a woman nor a man. Some sources suggest that Banksy is, in fact, a group of contemporary street artists. The fact remains that the elusive artist is unidentified, so it is hard to say for sure. However, other artists refer to Banksy as male.

4. Sotheby’s made it up

You must have heard about Banksy’s notorious painting that self-destructed during the auction at Sotheby’s. Many thought it was made up, but later both Sotheby’s and Pest Control debunked the information.

5. His nickname comes from his football career

Do you know how Banksy came up with his nickname? It is argued that the street artist received the pseudonym while being a goalkeeper. However, there is also a view that it derives from “Robin Banx,” his earliest tag.

Never fall for these myths. Consider them folk tales invented either by obsessive fans or media that wants to hook the audience. If Banksy decides to come to light, the chances are that you will learn it from the elusive artist himself.