Blek le Rat, the man who gave birth to Banksy
Banksy [Macromedia Flash Player]
Tate Modern: Street Art
TIME: Art of the Street Photo Essay
Many experts and neophytes throughout the ages have asked, "What is art?" Some say there must be a mission statement or intentionality to have real "art", and others say that the matter is completely subjective. Some have created distinctions of "high" and "low" art to distinguish between the work of the Old Masters, for example, and that of young Turks who go around creating street art. One of these young Turks is the Bristol-born Banksy, who is well known for his graffiti projects across the world. Appearing almost out of nowhere, his work has included snarky representations of Queen Elizabeth II, law enforcement representatives, and deeply cynical send-ups of consumer culture. In recent times, Banksy's work, along with fellow street artists like Swoon, has garnered significant attention from cultural critics, the general public, and people who are plain furious about what they call defacement of property. Recently, a piece by Jennifer Hill at Reuters took a close look at the growing interest among investors in such work, even though the work sometimes appears on large buildings and structures, and therefore cannot be moved or modified due to its placement. Financial planner Christine Ross at the SG Hambros Private Bank noted that in thinking about the rising value of such work, "When you come to sell, who knows where the market will be? It can very much depend on what's in vogue. While you'll probably find a buyer for most pieces, at what price?"
The first link will take users to a piece by Jennifer Hill from Reuters UK about the rising interest in various types of street art. The second link leads to an article from the Times Online about the "grand old man" of street art, Blek le Rat. Moving on, the third link leads to the homepage of the elusive Banksy. On the site, visitors can learn about his work, and even download a few works for their own personal use. The fourth link leads to information about a current exhibit at the Tate Modern in London, which presents the work of six internationally, acclaimed street artists. The exhibition looks quite fascinating, and well worth a visit. The fifth link leads to an interactive photo essay from TIME which offers up a selection of street art from artists such as WK, Miss Van, and Pez. The final link whisks visitors away to the collaborative weblog "Streetart" which is a place for "photos of DIY posters, guerilla stickers, home-made stencils, etc.".