In a rare opportunity to hear Banksy’s voice, a lost BBC interview with the secretive artist has been found. The recording from 2003, featuring former BBC arts correspondent Nigel Wrench, reveals Banksy’s name is “Robbie.” For years, there has been speculation on social media about whether his name is Robin, Robert or Robbie.
The artist was interviewed by Wrench to mark the opening of Banksy’s Turf War show in East London. An edited version was broadcast on the BBC’s PM programme in July of the same year. However, not all the material was used. Many years later, Wrench listened to the podcast ‘The Banksy Story’ and decided to record the entire interview on a minidisc in his home. The never-before-published material sheds light on how Banksy defends vandalism as art. He told Wrench: “It’s a quicker way to get your point across. In the same way my mother used to prepare Sunday roast every Sunday and say every Sunday that ‘it takes hours to prepare a meal and minutes to eat it’”, he explained. He added: “Today she is eating a meal for one person that she reheats in the microwave and seems much happier.” When asked if graffiti was vandalism and whether he considered it illegal, Banksy gave people the following advice: “Get out! Throw things in the trash! Have fun!”
Earlier this year, British media announced that his real name is Robert Banks, that he was born in 1974. This artist has been intriguing the world public for years with his satirical works that often carry anti-war, anti-capitalist, anti-establishment or libertarian messages.