Banksy identity 'accidentally revealed by Goldie' during interview

Fans and media claim the slip-up proves the artist is a member of the band Massive Attack

Roisin O'Connor
Friday 23 June 2017 09:09 BST
Identity of Banksy 'accidentally revealed' by Goldie

Goldie appears to have let slip subversive graffiti artist Banksy's “real identity” after he spoke about him in a new interview.

The musician and DJ was ranting about how the art world had cashed in on graffiti, despite the art form still being tarnished with negative associations.

Appearing on Scroobius Pip's weekly Distraction Pieces podcast, Goldie said: "Give me a bubble letter and put it on a T-shirt and write Banksy on it and we're sorted. We can sell it now... No disrespect to Robert, I think he is a brilliant artist. I think he has flipped the world of art over."

After he mentioned “Robert”, Goldie paused for a few seconds before changing the subject.

Reports claim that this appears to suggest Banksy is Robert Del Naja, a member of Massive Attack. Del Naja, also known as 3D, is a friend of Goldie and they worked as graffiti artists in the same circles during the late 1980s.

Journalist Craig Williams carried out a five-month investigation last year and concluded that Del Naja was behind the movement. He claimed that Banksy was not one person but instead a team of street artists, with Del Naja as the ringleader.

Del Naja denied this, saying it would be "a good story but sadly not true". "Wishful thinking, I think," he said. "He is a mate as well. He's been to some of the gigs. It's purely a matter of logistics and coincidence, nothing more than that."

However, fans believe that Goldie's apparent slip-up confirms Del Naja's involvement.

Banksy murals have frequently appeared in locations where Massive Attack have recently played.

For instance, in April 2003 Banksy's work appeared in Melbourne, where the band had played a month before. And according to Williams' investigation, six Banksy murals were reported in San Francisco on 1 May 2010. Massive Attack had played two nights in the city that April.

Banksy provided the foreword to Del Naja's book 3D and the Art of Massive Attack, which was released last year.

Update: Goldie is apparently laughing the incident off, tweeting that he and 3D are "pissing [our] pants" at the frenzy his interview caused.

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