Banksy versus Bristol Museum – Part I

Banksy tag

On our “must do” list this summer was a trip to Bristol to see the Banksy exhibit.

So who is this “Banksy” guy, and what is so special about this exhibit?

Banksy is a graffiti artist, and his exhibit at the Bristol Museum was unlike any other I’ve been to. It was well worth the two-hour wait to get in the door.

Not much is known about the elusive artist (including his real identity… although there has been speculation), but his art has been described as having anti-war, anti-capitalist or anti-establishment themes, and I would concur with that description.

I was pleased to see Banksy address our culture’s treatment of animals as commodities. Both Mr Thrifty and I saw an obvious message in some of Banksy’s works. Though I’m not sure how many people saw past the “clever” art and caught a glimpse of the message (or at least, what we perceived as the message!)

Here, then, are some of our photos from the Banksy versus Bristol Museum exhibit.

Banksy - Ice cream van

The museum’s usual information desk was replaced by this burned-out ice cream van. And on the back of the van…

Banksy - Ice cream van sign on back

…naughty children carrying a bottle and knife.

Most of Banksy’s works were on the main floor, with the remainder placed throughout the regular museum exhibits.

Banksy - Room

Is this an accurate depiction of Banksy’s studio?

Banksy - zebra stripes

This is how zebras stay clean.

Banksy - big gold frame

The secret to great art.

Banksy - Chicken nugget chicks

For those who live in a happy world of denial – your chicken nuggets actually used to be living, breathing animals. (This piece was animated… the “chicks” were pecking at the sauce. )

Banksy - rabbit testing cosmetics

Also… this is not how cosmetics are tested on animals. (Another animatronic piece, with the bunny blinking and filing her nails.)

Banksy - monkey artist

So this is where art comes from! Very realistic — the monkey was breathing and blinking.

Banksy - leopard from the back

A leopard lounging on a branch, with his tail twitching. Or is it?

Banksy - leopard from the front

For those who still wear real fur… take a moment to consider what it used to be. This brings to mind an anti-fur Mutts (Patrick McDonnell) comic strip, “I like my fur breathing.”

More Banksy photos coming in another post.

Hope you all had a great summer!


  1. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  2. I don’t know if I will get the chance to get down to Bristol and see the Banksy exhibition, but Thank you to you for sharing this.

    By the way, did you see the news yesterday re: graffitti OR art (inspired by Banksy) and Bristol council putting images on its web for the public to vote on whether to keep or wash away. A very interesting story that I will be closely following.

  3. Sandra — Hope you find some interesting and/or useful stuff here!
    mangocheeks — Unfortunately, the Banksy exhibit finished on August 31st. I knew that the Bristol city council had previously allowed a public vote on whether one of Banksy’s works should be kept or removed; glad to see they have made it official policy.

  4. Wow this looks really fascinating. I particularly like the chicken piece, although everything you posted gives me something to think about. I am definitely intrigued. Thanks for sharing!!

  5. Wow! What a great exhibit and very enlightening! Oh I would love to go too.

    Thank you for sharing this with everyone. The chicken nuggets one should be a poster at fast food restaurants! A good reminder of where food comes from!

  6. Oh I am dissapointed I missed it, but so glad that I got to see some it through your eyes. Once again Thank you -it has been very throught provoking.

  7. This is a wonderful exhibit. It looks fascinating and the peices of work there will really make people listen. Thanks for sharing 😀

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