Test Your Banksy Knowledge
News / Banksy

Test Your Banksy Knowledge

25 May 2021

How well do you know the UK’s favourite artist? Find out with our quiz…

Questions:

1. Name three people who just might be Banksy, according to the UK press.

2. Where was the Rude Copper print first sold?

3. What’s the most expensive Banksy ever sold?

4. Who is the only female celebrity Banksy has ever depicted in his work?

5. Name five animals you can find in Banksy’s art.

6. Which Banksy street piece had a Covid-appropriate makeover in 2020?

7. Which Banksy is in the British Museum?

Banksy in his London studio in the early 2000s.

Banksy in his London studio in the early 2000s.

Steve Lazarides

8. What’s Banksy’s latest street piece?

9. Name that Banksy quickfire round. It’s all in the detail: Can you identify these four Banksy works from these blown-up bits?

10. Which of these did Banksy NOT say?

i) Sometimes when you’re drunk, you can see better.

ii) There are four basic human needs; food, sleep, sex and revenge.

iii) Speak softly, but carry a big can of paint.

9: Identify these four Banksy works.

9: Identify these four Banksy works.

Answers:

1. Name three people who just might be Banksy, according to the UK press.

A: The British media have been obsessed with unmasking Banksy for two decades. In their quest to find his true identity, they often point to Bristol native, Robin Gunningham (a theory backed up by a 2016 ‘geoprofiling’ study by Queen Mary University). However, Gunningham isn’t the only man that the media have claimed is Banksy. Other suspects include the shady Robin Banks (which sounds like a pseudonym in itself), as well as founding member of Massive Attack, Robert del Naja – who flat-out denied he was the artist in an interview with the Daily Mail. The street artist Mr Brainwash, who stars in Banksy’s Oscar-winning film Exit Through The Gift Shop, is another name that comes up frequently (the press cites the similarity between works by both artists). Other aliases mooted by the papers include Gorillaz artist Jamie Hewlett and even Damien Hirst.

(3 points; 1 for each name)

2. Where was the Rude Copper print first sold?

A: Rude Copper was first sold out of the boot of the car of Banksy’s former agent, Steve Lazarides. Back in 2002, Banksy created some of his first editions with his one-time agent. Reminiscing about the period in a 2015 interview with the Irish Times, Lazarides explained that the duo had driven to pick up the prints together, and he had then ended up flogging them from the back.

(1 point)

Devolved Parliament sold at Sotheby's in 2019 foe £9,879,500.

Devolved Parliament sold at Sotheby's in 2019 foe £9,879,500.

Banksy ; Pest Control Office

3. What’s the most expensive Banksy ever sold?

A: Game Changer. Until this year, Devolved Parliament (a canvas depicting chimpanzees in the House of Commons) was Banksy’s most expensive work, selling at Sotheby’s in 2019 for £9,879,500. But in March 2021, Game Changer was auctioned at Christie’s to raise money for NHS charities, raising an incredible £14.4 million and smashing its high estimate of £3.5million. The piece first appeared at Southampton Hospital during May 2020.

(1 point)

4. Who is the only female celebrity Banksy has ever depicted in his work?

A: Kate Moss. In 2005, Banksy depicted the supermodel sporting Marilyn’s hair in a colourful homage to Andy Warhol (the print comes in six colourways). Rumours abound that Banksy was subsequently commissioned to create a mural in Moss’s bathroom, featuring her family and friends – but photographic evidence doesn’t seem to exist. The only male celebrities to feature in Banksy’s work are Samuel L Jackson and John Travolta, who appear in Pulp Fiction.

(1 point)

5. Name five animals you can find in Banksy’s art.

A: Monkeys and rats have been prominent tropes in Banksy’s art since he first rose to prominence, but a few other animals have featured in pieces you may have forgotten. Take a point each for the above, and add another for each of these: leopard; shark; elephant; rabbit; dog. If you said Mickey Mouse (who features in Napalm), you can have a point too.

(5 points)

'Untitled 22' from Banksy Captured.

'Untitled 22' from Banksy Captured.

Steve Lazarides

6. Which Banksy street piece had a Covid-appropriate makeover in 2020?

A: The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum. Situated in Hanover Place, Bristol, the 2014 mural is a riff on Vermeer’s Girl With A Pearl Earring. Last March, a face mask appeared over the piece’s nose and mouth just as the coronavirus took hold: Banksy is yet to confirm or deny responsibility.

(1 point)

7. Which Banksy is in the British Museum?

A: Di Faced Tenner. Produced in 2004 and distributed at Notting Hill Carnival and Reading Festival, these fake ten pound notes feature Princess Diana and Charles Darwin. In 2018, Pest Control donated one of the notes to the British Museum, to join its collection of ‘skit notes’ (fake bank notes, often with puns).

(1 point)

8. What’s Banksy’s latest street piece?

A: In March 2021, Banksy created an image of a prisoner escaping with his typewriter from long-abandoned Reading Prison with the help of a bed sheet (the piece possibly depicts Oscar Wilde who was famously imprisoned at the jail). Fans of King Robbo (who had a feud with Banksy before his death in 2014) defaced the piece, but it was later restored by other street artists and is still visible today.

(1 points)

9. Name that Banksy quickfire round.

It’s all in the detail: Can you identify these five Banksy works from these blown-up bits?

A: i) I Fought The Law

ii) Grannies

iii) Applause

iv) Chocolate Donuts

(4 points)

10. Which of these did Banksy NOT say?

i) Sometimes when you’re drunk, you can see better.

ii) There are four basic human needs; food, sleep, sex and revenge.

iii) Speak softly, but carry a big can of paint.

A: Banksy said ii) and iii), but the first quote comes from Damien Hirst (who may or may not actually be Banksy; see above).

(1 point)

Banksy's latest street piece on the wall of an abandoned Reading Prison, March 2021.

Banksy's latest street piece on the wall of an abandoned Reading Prison, March 2021.

Berkshire Live / Darren Pepe

How did you do?

15-20 points:

Congrats: you’re clearly a Banksy expert and deserve to have a piece or two on your walls. See the works we have for sale here...

10-15 points:

Not bad, but there’s definitely more to find out about Britain’s favourite artist. Check out our Banksy’s buyer’s guide here...

Under 10 points:

You’re just starting out on your Banksy journey! How about coming to see the pieces we have for sale or in our permanent collection? You can make an appointment here.

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