The full disclaimer for every "Banksy, unmasked!!!" story should read: When it comes to the elusive street artist, the use of tactical misinformation is always within the realm of possibility. A recent podcast interview between musical artists Goldie and Scroobius Pip has armchair detectives scrambling to revisit old evidence that Bristol's best-kept secret is, indeed, a collection of vandals led by none other than Massive Attack co-founder Robert Del Naja, a.k.a., 3D. According to the Daily Star, the slip-up happens at around the 38-minute mark. "Give me a bubble letter and put it on a t-shirt and write 'Banksy' on it and we're sorted. We can sell it now," Goldie says, going off on a tangent. "No disrespect to Robert, I think he is a brilliant artist. I think he has flipped the world of art over." Goldie seems to pause after the statement, while Pip replies, "Yeah, completely."
Last year, facing mounting evidence, Del Naja stated that the claim was, "Wishful thinking I think. [Banksy] is a mate as well, he's been to some of the gigs. It's purely a matter of logistics and coincidence, nothing more than that." The inquiry faced another setback after footage of Banksy in Tel Aviv was revealed to have been of another artist entirely.
Similarly, a 'geographic profiling' program last year identified Banksy to be Bristol native Robin Gunningham. So, who is the man behind the controversial Walled-Off Hotel, the dystopian Dismaland theme park, and perhaps the best plan to troll Conservatives since street artists smuggled anti-Homeland graffiti into Homeland? And, for that matter, what happens when we find out? If the backlash surrounding last year's unmasking of writer Elena Ferrante is any indication, maybe some mysteries are better kept unsolved.
Read more about what Banksy's been up to below: