Bristolians overwhelmingly believe Banksy is an important part of their city’s culture, a new Bristol Live survey has found.
According to our poll, 79 per cent of Bristolians think Banksy forms an important part of Bristol’s culture, compared to 13 per cent who do not believe he is. The remainder did not respond to that particular question.
We also asked people to pick their favourite Banksy artwork in Bristol, and the results for this question were much closer: 23 per cent said Mild Mild West, the first known Banksy piece in Bristol, while 20 per cent went for Well Hung Lover, which lies at the bottom of Park Street.
The next most popular option, excluding undecideds, was Valentine’s Day, with 6 per cent of the vote.
Views were also mixed when we asked whether readers agreed with the activism and views portrayed in Banksy’s work, which often contains criticism of authoritarianism, war, capitalism, and environmental damage.
One respondent approved of the messages in Banksy’s art, saying: “He brings complex, intricate issues into a mainstream understanding through his distinctive social commentary. Banksy shows compassion through the subject matter and placement of his artwork.”
Another was more succinct when they said, “His work is epic!”, while others were less approving.
One dissenter said, “No and I think he’s extremely overrated”. Most, however, said they agreed with the views expressed in Banksy’s art, and one respondent said they “feel like they represent the views of Bristol in general, too”.
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Regardless of your views on the artist, there’s no doubt he’s one of Bristol’s most famous and celebrated exports.
For more on the anonymous graffitist, you might be interested in our attempt to find out: who is Banksy?
Bristol Live surveyed 163 people online from April 9 to May 6.