There is a “fake” press release going around the internet about the world renowned graffiti artist Banksy being arrested and his identity revealed. Arrested on Feb. 22nd in London, 39 year old Paul William Horner is the claim of Banksy’s identity. Is currently being held without bail. Charges of vandalism, conspiracy, racketeering, and counterfeiting. The press release states that both BBC and CNN have reported on his arrest, but there are no links or archive that shows they covered it. This is most likely an elaborate hoax–maybe by Banksy himself. Many news sites have this story already, with only a few saying it’s possibly fraudulent. I am certain we will know more in the next day or two if Mr. Horner is Banksy.
My thoughts on if Banksy did get revealed it would be over. The whole gimmick works on the anonymous aspect of it being anybody. Not Paul Horner stenciling a policeman on a wall, who cares. Banksy’s artistic works have created a political and socially commentary for the world. Paving the way for other graffiti artists, affecting the counter-culture forever. Banksy is more than just a pseudonym, it is its own genre of guerrilla quality public art. If Banksy was in trouble, arrested, in jail, he could easily just sell art to the world for millions. But if he went that approach, it wouldn’t be Banksy anymore, it would just be another corporation.