This week's New Yorker carries an excellent Lauren Collins profile of Banksy, the mysterious British graffiti artist/prankster. At the end of the piece, Banksy discusses the difficulty of flying under the radar, and points out an unlikely culprit who's made things more difficult for him:
"In retrospect getting your work in the newspapers is a really dumb thing to do if what you do requires a certain level of anonymity. I was a bit slow there. Brad Pitt told a journalist 'I think it's really cool no one knows who he is' and within a week there were journalists from the Daily Mail at the door of my dealer's dad's chip shop asking if he knew where they could find me. All the attention meant I lost some of the element of surprise. A few days after the show in Los Angeles opened I was painting under a freeway downtown when a homeless guy ran over and said, 'Hey—are you Binsky?' I left the next day."
Movie stars and famous people. Always with the privacy invading.
Banksy Was Here [NYer]