After the results of a new survey were revealed on June 18, it seems young people are expanding their horizons from the traditional view more than ever. 6,000 people aged 18-25 took part in a survey commissioned by Arts Award that begged the question: Who is your art hero?
While the general list brought Leonardo da Vinci to number one, this age group placed him at number four, overtaken by the likes of Walk Disney, Peter Kay, and Banksy.
Yes, the infamous yet mysterious graffiti artist is considered more of a hero than da Vinci. I have to admit, I see the appeal and have made it my personal mission to discover as many hidden Banksy works as I can find.
As a matter of fact, I discovered a new one right around the corner from where I work in Archway yesterday. It was Charles Manson hitching a ride to 'Anywhere'. I took a picture.
There is endless speculation about his true identity, but the message seems to be more important than the man. Using the world as his canvas, the artist spreads his messages of anti-war, pro-freedom, anti-establishment and anti-capitalism. At least someone is still spreading the spirit of peaceful rebellion and raising a bit of controversy that helps raise the important issues.
His work is so popular, this April saw a new record sale for his piece 'Space Girl & Bird' commanded £288,000 (about $576,000).
With an endless array of stunts, you never know where you will spot Banksy's touch. I discovered one in Brick Lane last Sunday, one in Chalk Farm a few days ago. At a muddy Glastonbury festival last weekend, he created a portable toilet version of Stonehenge.
Photo: The Guardian
While his work is found everywhere from New York to Israel to Bristol Zoo where he reportedly left the message, “I want out. This place is too cold. Keeper smells. Boring, boring, boring” in the elephant enclosure, London is still the best place to spot a Banksy.
To read more about Banksy and check out some work by this art hero, visit his website at http://www.banksy.co.uk/ and keep your eyes peeled.
The list of art heroes
(18-25 year olds)/General
1. Walt Disney/Leonardo da Vinci
2. Peter Kay/ Bob Dylan
3. Banksy/ Andy Warhol
4. Leonardo da Vinci/ Walt Disney
5. Bob Marley/ Peter Kay
6. Jane Austin/ Jane Austin
7. Bob Dylan/ Banksy
8. Tim Burton/ Bob Marley
9. Marilyn Monroe/ Nick Park
10. Will Smith/ Picasso