4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The unauthorised biography Banksy will hate,
This review is from: Banksy: The Man Behind the Wall (Hardcover)Banksy's website has a faq. Q: "What's with the new books about Banksy?" A: "Don't know. I haven't been involved with any of them." This sounds cool, like he's not that arsed, but you can bet that either Banksy or one of his heavies has given this book the once over... and they won't like it one bit.
Not that there's anything derogatory or vitriolic about it - in fact, Ellsworth-Jones comes across as something of a Banksy fan - but my guess is that the reasonable tone and in-depth research is close to the bone enough to make uncomfortable reading.
The book gives a fascinating insight into Banksy's world - and what a weird place it has become. Dangerous subversive turned darling of the hideous art world he claims to despise; hailed as a genius by council officials who conveniently drop their zero-tolerance approach to graffiti when blessed with a Banksy; watching others go to prison while his work is ripped out of context and displayed in high-end galleries. All the contradictions must really mess with his head. Some are of his own making, others completely out of his control.
This excellent book paints a complex picture of Banksy. Talented artist, risk taker, shrewd self-publicist, paranoid control freak... it all somehow rings true.
Best read in conjunction with Banksy's "Wall and Piece," available from your local library if you don't fancy forking out.