In 2008, a report claimed to know the identity of notorious street artist Banksy (spoilers: his name is reportedly Robin Gunningham). Earlier this year, a scientific study analysed everything publically known about Banksy, eventually pointing to the same Bristol-based man. Yet, fo many, the jury is still out on Banksy’s true identity.
Thanks to a long, detailed blog post by Craig Williams, picked up by Dazed, the identity of Banksy has again been questioned, the blogger concluding that the ‘artist’ may actually be a group of ‘artists’, masterminded by Massive Attack co-founder Robert ‘3D’ Del Naja.
Now this may seem slightly bonkers, but Williams reasons how Banksy artworks would constantly crop up in cities where the Bristol-based band were playing, citing various examples such as shows in Boston’s Chinatown, the Hollywood Bowl, and a 2013 New York gig.
The author also points out the entwined history Massive Attack and Banksy share. “When I was about 10 years old, a kid called 3D was painting the streets hard,” the artist wrote in the foreword of3D & the Art of Massive Attack.
“3D quit painting and formed the band Massive Attack, which may have been a good thing for him, but was a big loss for the city.”
Vice-versa, 3D has previously called Banksy a close friend, appearing in his documentary Exit Through The Gift Shop.
Williams concludes: “Perhaps the assertion then that Banksy is just one person is wide of the mark, instead being a group who have, over the years, followed Massive Attack around and painted walls at their leisure.
“And perhaps, at the head of such a group we have Del Naja. A multi-disciplined artist in front of one the seminal groups in recent British music history, doubling up as the planet’s most revered street artist. Now that would be cool.”