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Art Attack’s Neil Buchanan forced to deny being Banksy after bizarre conspiracy theory gains traction

Buchanan’s website was ‘inundated with inquiries’ after rumours of his alter-ego went viral

Louis Chilton
Tuesday 08 September 2020 10:59 BST
Banksy paints a truck

Art Attack presenter Neil Buchanan has been forced to issue a denial after a conspiracy theory identifying him as secretive UK street artist Banksy went viral.

Banky’s identity has famously remained unknown to the public, and a new theory proposed that he was in fact Buchanan, the 58-year-old artist and musician known for, hosting Art Attack on ITV from 1990 to 2007.

The idea began to circulate last week when a Twitter user suggested it was “rumoured” that Buchanan was in fact the mind behind artworks like Balloon Girl and Love is in the Bin.

“Just heard that it’s rumoured Neil Buchanan is Banksy,” they wrote. 

“If true, it’s the funniest s*** ever. Aintree’s finest… This is straight in the believe without question category.”

They explained that the theory was given credibility by the fact that Buchanan, like Banksy, is a musician - a former member of heavy metal band Marseille - and “art has followed in cities of shows he’s done allegedly”. 

Many people then responded to the rumour on social media by announcing they believe it, with one person arguing:  “Neil Buchanan WAS known for his big outdoor pieces utilising multimedia props and items to craft uncanny replicas” [on Art Attack]. 

“I’m here for this conspiracy theory," wrote someone else.

Others, however, were more sceptical, with several people stating that this was definitely not the case.

And, sure enough, Buchanan issued an unequivocal denial of the rumour on his website.

The statement reads: "We have been inundated with enquiries over the weekend regarding the current social media story.

"Unfortunately this website does not have the infrastructure to answer all these enquiries individually, however we can confirm that there is no truth in the rumour whatsoever."

There have been several theories about the true identity of Bristol native Banksy throughout the years.

One of the most popular theories used geographic profiling to supposedly identify the acclaimed artist as Robin Gunningham, a Bristol resident.

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