Exit Through The Gift Shop's semi-subject and director Banksy has been named one of the Torontoist's 2010 Heros (they've got Villains, too). In May, the mysterious street artist created seven pieces throughout the city (by now most are gone, the inevitable fate of street art). But, as Torontoist's Nick Mount writes, "the main virtue of Banksy's North American tour is simply that it got some of us out of our homes and into what's left of our public spaces on a collective scavenger hunt, searching for Banksy and often finding each other." Torontoist says of the seven gifts to their city, "That Toronto fucked them up was too bad, but what mattered most is that they were ours to find in the first place."
Here is an interview with Banksy, where he talks Exit Through The Gift Shop's Thierry Guetta, anonymity, "selling out" and his art's relationship to film:
"The art I make is similar to film - my paintings are essentially freeze frames from movies that are playing in my head. I think its pretty clear that film is the pre-eminent art form of our age. If Michaelangelo or Leonardo Da Vinci were alive today they’d be making Avatar, not painting a chapel. Film is incredibly democratic and accessible, it’s probably the best option if you actually want to change the world, not just re-decorate it."
[Photos courtesy of HighSnobiety]