Thursday, March 3, 2011

Exit Through the Gift Shop

I don't know if you all have heard of a little thing called street art. It's graffiti as far as the law is concerned and is a crime. But some of them can be quite interesting and beautiful.

Sweeping it under the rug
Artists can create street art in various ways, using stickers, stencils, paint, basically any type of media to leave a mark.  Gangs use graffiti to mark territory and artists use street art to make a political point or to make their city more beautiful.  Personally, I don't think it's vandalism if it's tasteful, but the owner's of the buildings say otherwise.

Art or Vandalism

During the Oscar season, you may have heard of a British artist known as Banksy.  Banksy doesn't seem to be a fan of making art to sell it. He pokes fun at the art market a little in his documentary Exit Though the Gift Shop.  It's a movie about a French film maker, Thierry Guetta, that takes a stab at street art himself and comes up with the alter ego of Mr. Brainwash.

Thierry Guetta AKA Mr. Brainwash (MBW)

As Mr. Brainwash he has a large show, after Banksy tells him to make art and have a show while he fixes the movie Thierry was making.  Thierry does repetitive images of celebrities with Marilyn Monroe hair and Elvis with a toy gun in different colors.  To me all of his "work" looks the same and is produced on a mass scale.  MBW's intent was to sell the items for a LARGE profit (a few thousand each).  In the film, Banksy makes a comment that he used to tell everyone to do art, but after having created MBW he doesn't do that anymore.  
Banksy, he's very secretive

After watching MBW try to sell his "art" for thousands of dollars, one might have the idea that this is a hoax.  When I searched Mr. Brainwash on Google, it autofilled with "hoax" at the end. I decided to follow this link, but found no proof.  Is Exit Through the Gift Shop an elaborate hoax with a Borat-like actor to poke fun at the art world? No one knows except Banksy and the others involved in creating this film.  I would like to hope that it is and that MBW isn't as dumb as he seems.  Either way, check out Exit Through the Gift Shop and enjoy it for its entertainment value and street art that is shown.  

Banksy - Art Outlaw

And if you find any street art, snap a couple pictures!  Get it before it's gone!

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