Did Goldie Reveal The True Identity Of Banksy?

Ah, Banksy. A character whose true identity is a topic that often comes up for debate, but not one where there's all that much to actually debate.

There's only so much chatting you can do about a man who basically has no public persona, and is only known by his works of art.

Last year people began questioning yet again whether Robert '3D' Del Naja, founding member of trip-hop band Massive Attack, is the man behind the spray cans - now there seems to be more evidence to support this claim, as fellow musician Goldie appeared to let his identify slip.

'No Ball Games'. Credit: PA

Speaking on Scroobius Pip's weekly Distraction Pieces podcast, Goldie went on a rant about art and how it's mass produced for profit, directly mentioning Banksy, but suddenly switching to a different name.

"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," he said. "No disrespect to Robert, I think he is a brilliant artist. I think he has flipped the world of art over."

Is that a slip of the tongue, or a coincidence? It's not as if Robert is a rare name. If they were both called Giles or Alvin I reckon we could call this quintessential evidence.

Craig Williams, a 31-year-old investigative journalist, put forward the theory that Robert is the real Banksy after noticing that a lot of art is coincidentally appearing close to Massive Attack gigs. He's been questioning whether or not the trip-hop guru is also behind the infamous street art, or at least fronting a team responsible for it.

Robert was reportedly a graffiti artist back in the 1980s and has previously claimed to be a friend of Banksy. Williams found that at least more than 12 murals appeared either before or after Massive Attack gigs in the cities they were in, over the past 12 years.

People are also pondering the identity of urban legend Wanksy.

After Banksy's meteoric rise over the last two decades, questions have been asked whether or not one person is creating the stencils, while others paint them around the world.

During his investigation, Williams found that on May 1, 2010, shortly after Massive Attack performed two nights in San Francisco, six Banksy murals were reported in the city.

A week later, they played Toronto, Canada, and another Banksy appeared. On the same tour they played in Boston's Chinatown, and, well, you get the picture.

Given the global spread of the art, it's plausible that Robert, while touring, has been painting the murals, either as Banksy, or on behalf of Banksy.

"A rumour exists from 2010 that his work that went up around North America was his work but was not necessarily painted by him, but rather by a street team that happened to be following the Massive Attack tour," Williams said. "And on analysis of his North American work, this makes perfect sense."

Given Robert's apparent 'friendship' with Banksy (he's publicly spoken about their friendship and Banksy provides the foreword to a book about Massive Attack), he could be very easily referring to himself.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Claire Reid

Claire Reid is a journalist at LADbible. Claire graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a BA in journalism. She’s previously worked at Trinity Mirror. Since joining LADbible, Claire has worked on pieces for the UOKM8? mental health campaign, the Yemen crisis, life in the Calais Jungle as well as a profile of a man who is turning himself into a cyborg.

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