Banksy’s world


Traveller 27. Take line 12 North. Stop at Notre-Dame-de-Lorette. Take Rue de Châteaudun to the right. Turn right on Rue du Faubourg Montmartre. “Voilà”. The world of Banksy is an extraordinary re-creation of Banksy’s art. As soon as I saw the ads in the Paris metro, I knew I had to go.


Go early. This was the queue coming out. 🙂 No fear. (Traveller 28 et al.)


“Gangsta rat”. “They exist without permission… hated, hunted and persecuted…” Banksy.


Need I say more?


“Happy chopper.” ‘A perfectly executed piece with vibrant details, Happy Chopper is a child’s dream of war’. Seriously? Those, fortunately, are not Banksy’s words. Most likely the curator. When I was in the Army I did combined manoeuvres with the chopper guys. I don’t like choppers. This piece is best watched listening to Wagner’s Walkyrie. 😉


Assume the position. NOW!


Not quite yet. Bear with me.


Scotty’s engine room. I swear. What are we doing here? (See the tiny ratsy footprints on the floor?) “Beam us back down again, Scotty, please. Thank you.”


A pillow fight in the Middle East?

Allow me a short break:


That is my only “original” Banksy. In a little street in the Latin Quarter. I saw it from a distance. A young guy was taking pictures, and I asked him: “Is this…?” “Yep.” A man of few words, he hold me Bansky had painted it on the 50th Anniversary of the events of May 68 (quite an important event in France). City Hall covered it with a plastic sheet, but by the time bureaucracy arrived with the plastic sheet, the painting had already been defaced. Here’s the original version I found on the web:


“Scotty, beam us back down to the underground world of Banksy, please.”


Mister and Mrs Ratsy, out for a night on the town…


… while Ratsy Junior is frolicking. Champagne everyone!


The original was painted in Paris a coupla years ago. Destroyed in less than 24 hours I believe. (It may have been replaced since)


Jean-Louis David’s initial version for comparison. Bonaparte crossing the Alps. Empress Joséphine’s castle at Rueil-Malmaison. c. 1801.


There be dealers. Or so they say in my neighbourhood.


Singing in the rain.


Traveller 29. Foreign politician looking away while sh..t is swept under the rug. I mean the wall. Always the darn furners’ fault, ain’t it?


Brought to you by Paranoid Pictures. “Your mind works best when you’re paranoid”, Banksy says in “Banging your head against a brick wall.” Is that why I am having repeated headaches lately? I wonder.

This remarkably well-put expo (Splendid, old chap!) was only scheduled for June-July. After many “Encore”, it has been extended till December 31st this year. You can still buy your ticket to Paris.

Allow me to end on the one thing we should never stop fighting for:


Freedom! See Richie Havens for further details:

104 thoughts on “Banksy’s world

    • Banksy seems to be a half secret. Apparently many know who he is. Now, when I asked one of the guys watching over the expo how could they recreate Banksy’s works so perfectly on those underground walls, he smiled and said: “when you have the original stencils, it’s easy.” So someone had contact with Banksy. And a great job they did. (I knew you might like it) 🙂

  1. The girl in the poster made me think of a little girl in a similar dress and a heart in her hand, here in Helsinki. I featured a photo of the painting in a post of mine a while ago. Now I’m wondering if it’s Banksy or intended as a copy! I doubt Banksy ever traveled to Finland 🤣 But the girl does look so similar. I didn’t think she had a message but having a heart in her hand certainly is one, come to think of it…

      • Tout va bien, Brieuc ! Aucune de nos 8 cheminées n’est fonctionnelle. Nous avons un brûleur à éthanol quand nous voulons voir des flammes. Je n’en suis pas mécontent car une cheminée en ville est une source de pollution importante aux particules fines.
        Merci à toi et une douce et heureuse journée.

      • J’adore. 18e? Notre maison en Normandie avait probablement cet âge. Des murs en pierre épais de 80 cms. Mais une seule cheminée. Il avait fallu installer une chaudière. Et on la fermait de la Toussaint à Pâques. Trop froid.
        Bonne nuit.

    • Most welcome. The production was really very well done. Underground walls, tunnels, stairs. Perfect reproduction. Fantastic. Quite possibly one of the 2 best expos I saw this summer

    • Woodstock was a unique moment in the history of humanity. The end of the Civil rights. Blacks an whites singing and playing music together… When Richie Havens was singing Freedom, he knew what it meant. 🙂
      I wonder when things went South? 😉
      Thanks for visiting, Hedy.

    • I only slowly came to know of Banksy. As I started to develop an interest in street art a few years ago. And to have so much of his work concentrated in one space helps… understand his scope better, maybe.
      Richie Havens was a great musician. One has to remember the context of 1969. Bobby Kennedy and Dr King had been shot in ’68. Kennedy in ’63. The war in ‘Nam was in full speed. Yet Civil Rights were in place. A new era had begun. 🙂
      Thanks for the visit and comment Paul.

  2. Banksy is very neat. He was in Toronto about 9 years ago. He painted … I think 7 pieces over a night, not more than 3nights. Anyway, all but 1 were gone by morning. People cut pieces of wall out, stole a door, a traffic sign.. whatever. I did find the 1 that survived. The owner heavily bolted down a very thick plexi type glass over it. The plexi-glass and bolts are intensely scratched & scraped by would be thieves.
    I used it to do a book review about Banksy.

  3. Never can make up my mind about Banksy – rich boy playing a cynical game (assuming it’s Robin Gunningham or someone similar behind the name) or astute social commentator with a conscience? Vandal or artist, derivative or original, individual or collective? Can he be all of these at once? Does it matter anyway? Whatever the case, he has people talking – I just wonder, as do many, if the focus is on the issues he seemingly purports to care about.

    • I understand. Totally. I’m not sure I agree with all his stands, but… Picasso was a monster and his work remains. What I liked in this expo in Paris was the way it covered most of his work. So – for me at least – it was like an impromptu class.
      García Marquez was one the greatest writers of the 20th century, and yet, I understand from a close friend that he was insufferable.
      I would think the artist doesn’t matter, it’s the art, and what it does to you.
      Merci Libre.
      Take care.
      B. (as in Brian, not Banksy)

      • He has taken art to an interesting meta level, how to rip off or even expose the ‘art world’, the wealthy collector. He is part of the installation. In their own way, living up (or down) to their reputations, perhaps artists like Picasso were too.

      • Yeah, whenever I see the price a Van Gogh reaches today, and he lived in poverty… 😦
        Picasso used to give appointments to all his gallery merchants at close times so they could meet each other in the staircase, so as to increase the prices…

  4. I went to a Banksy exhibition in Rome once, paid 12 Eur, and hoped that he would make an intervention by nicking his own piece, for example. But no, he had nothing to do with it, just others cashing in on him again. Still, it was good to see it all in the same place, his works and deeds. His ideas are the right stuff. Even though that once when he painted a living elephant (to be invisible in a room), hm…. And then I saw sweatshirts with his motifs on sale around the corner. Went well together. I wrote about it here:

    • 12 Euros is about the standard price for any expo/museum in Europe I think. But I have the feeling those who put the expo together in Paris know him. One told me they had stencils. Going to your post.

    • I went. Couldn’t find the comments. Banksy T-shirts for 25 Euros!? Darn. 🙂
      And the no photo thing? It took Paris a while but it’s now practically authorized anywhere. No Flash.
      Now, rainbow flags? Not in Rome? Seriously?

      • Comments are where it says Talk to me. 😀 But it’s okay, no need, here is good enough. Oh, sure you can see rainbow flags in Rome, but this particular collection of flags that I spotted was not that. Well, I’m glad that the exhibition you saw was more connected to him. His messages are important and deserve to be shared in any case.

      • I am responding to your comments on my blog…here, since I can’t seem to do it on my own blog, at the moment I will check out Saramago, thank you. And yes, a lot of American’s don’t vote because they don’t think it makes any difference, when everything is fixed. Some are just lazy. Some are stopped from voting. But the believe that the elections are fixed, deeps a lot of people from the polls.

      • Same happens increasingly in Europe. Many people don’t vote. Which is a mistake. Some parts may be rigged (i.e. Florida with the Bush brothers) but not all. Those who don’t vote leave the country to hooligans. I don’t think I’ve missed any major election in France since I started voting. Looong time ago. 😉

      • You’re right. We still have to vote, no matter what. It’s a form of freedom and our right, especially for women in this country. I honor all the women who fought to get us the vote and would never miss an election because of them, even if the elections are rigged.

  5. I’m so in love with the photo “Singing in the Rain”. The picture is just gorgeous. How I wish I can frame it up! Thanks for sharing the world through your lens, Peng Yu.

  6. Ah, Banksy who hides himself away but has publisher deals… so there must be many people who not only know who he is but know him well. What cracked me up was his stunt with the self-shredding picture.

  7. The power of an independent and free mind, and souls who wish to give something positive to the places they live. Great post, Brian, I hope you have a great weekend ahead.

    • Pretty much sums it up. And you may or may not agree with – all – Banksy says, but it makes you think. 🙂
      Thanks, I did, so did you I hope. Bonne semaine. (You back home yet? You had some travelling to do?)

      • I’m in the Czech Republic now until mid-December when I head back home to the States. Very much looking forward to it 🙂 Cheers to a great weekend.

      • It will be nice to be home. Czech? I seem to recall a post of yours there? Praga is a city that impressed me when we visited 15 years ago. Want to go back. (Outside of high season and tourist hordes…) Be good “Dalo.”

      • Now is a good time for Prague, the tourist are few but the people from the surrounding towns come into the city for the Christmas scenes and of course shopping… and while I’m not a shopper, it is cool to see people enjoying themselves. Hope all is well, and enjoy the beginning of the holiday season…a new year just around the corner.

      • It must an interesting time of the year to visit. (With several layers of clothes…) The lights. The restored colours of Prague with a Xmas spirit… 🙂
        All well, thank you. Getting ready to spend Xmas and New year with all the family in Tulum. No snow…
        You will soon be home, right?

  8. Masterful flow to your post- like how you brought us the Mai 68 one and then get back to the Exhibit ones 😉
    Glad they are leaving this up longer – but cannot make it to Paris before the year ends – but we need more bansky in the world so good to extend the show

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