Cover Image: Banksy: Completed

Banksy: Completed

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Member Reviews

I was very intrigued by this book.  I like Banksy and I think that his work is phenomenal.  The book is very well written and researched.  The author has done a great job of providing good stories and information about this evasive artist. By and large I really enjoyed this book and the way the author told  the story of Banksy of who he is and what he stands for.  A job well done, it was a great read.
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This was a great little book. Anyone who has a soft spot for Banksy will love it. I only wish it told me more.
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This was a great book to get lost in for a couple hours. If I was wanting to know more indepth about Banksy's work, I would have enjoyed the book even more. However, I had only a vague knowledge of Banksy art and found as an introduction this book was more than I needed. I loved all the images and the stories behind them. I did enjoy the effort put into compiling this book.
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I received a free ARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

I was really interested to read this book because, like so many people, I am a fan. This book is full of great information and stories about the elusive artist and it’s a treat to hear it from this perspective. It also makes me wish I had been able to visit Dismaland and the hotel. Overall I really enjoyed the book, the way the story was told and the authors portrayal of who Banksy is and what he stands for. I always keep my eyes peeled in Toronto because you’ll never know when things will pop up.
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Featuring many images, this is a fascinating work that avoids wasting time attempting to unmask what the identity (identities?) of Banksy to focus on the work, its impact, and the treatment by the art criticism establishment. There is an overview of Banksy history in a timeline of stencil graffiti artists reaching back to Blek le Rat. Explorations in detail are made of large-scope works such as the month-long New York City "residency", Dismaland, and the Walled Off Hotel. Much is based on the author's first-hand visits and inspections which is in contrast to the examples given of art critics demeaning to such Banksy projects without experiencing them. In sum, this becomes a treatise on the meaning of art and the appearance of public spaces. Is it the graffiti artist that spoils the view, or the plethora of billboards and placards?
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Banksy: Completed looks to be what will be a beautiful coffee table book showcasing the works and (known) life of Banksy, the famous street artist. I appreciated the thorough list of resources for more information and the variety of artwork from the past twenty years, as well as the opposing points of view of critics, artists, and the general public reflected throughout. This is a book I can see paging through often, or displaying open on a wall shelf.
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"Hardening of the categories leads to art disease." - Kenneth Snelson

Being a member of the great unwashed, it has never been a concern whether Banksy's work is or is not 'Art'. I enjoy the style and the skewering of politics and culture for the cleverness of it. Carol Diehl has shown that I didn't know the half of it. Her descriptions and explanations of a few of Banksy's works point to layers of meaning that aren't apparent at a glance. She also points to the pay-off of his style and anonymity in keeping the work relevant. Along the way Diehl offers her opinions on Artspeak, the Art Market, and critics who don't do their homework. Her writing is non-technical and insightful.  I was afraid this book might be a slog  and instead found a delightful and informative read.
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Four stars!
When I got this book, I expected it to be a more of a "coffee-table" style book with photos of Banksy's installments and a brief discussion of each in captions. However, the author does a great job of presenting and academically discussing Banksy and his work, as well as considering the opinions of anti-Banksy art critics. As a long time fan of Banksy's art, I've just realized how little I actually knew about the artist.  My only complaint, is although it was adequately illustrated as it is, I did wish for more pictures of the art being discussed.  I'm grateful to Netgalley and MIT Press for the opportunity to read and review Banksy: Completed.
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This was such an interesting read. What great insight it gave into the oh so famous man that most of us know so little about. His paintings are fantastic, world renowned, unmistakable and so very pointed. He shakes things up and purposely highlights issues that most of us shy away from. He is a mystery, an enigma, yet a hero. This is an unmissable exploration into his work and his motivations.
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I liked the book quite a lot. Even though I found out many interesting facts about Banksy's work and the photos were interesting, the book seemed better off like a longer essay with more photos than mini-chapters without consistency. Despite the writing being all over the place, I did like the book and I probably would have bought it. 
Thank you to MIT Press and Netgalley.
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A great analysis and explanations of everyone’s favourite street artist. Lots of great images are looked at, many that I have not seen before.
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Wow so much I didn’t know about this artist! I’ve always enjoyed or at least appreciated his work but this book took it to a whole other level. Very interesting!
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I was surprised to discover that this book is mostly text with some photographs of Banksy's work.  The prose would be interesting and useful to an art student or person who follows contemporary art in a more academic way.  Since Banksy's identity is still officially unknown (although there is a prime suspect) this book does not offer the usual biography with history of the artist's life and education.  Banksy's work speaks for itself, and he is of the mind (like Alice Neel and others) that if you could explain your art in words, it needn't exist.  I appreciate the anti-establishment viewpoint of the author.  She quotes several anti-Banksy art critics, and then contradicts them effectively.  I am among those who see Banksy as an important social commentator who uses graphic forms to full effect.  I love the stencil format and what he is able to do with it especially with time constraints (he must paint quickly to avoid arrest for vandalism).  There is a puckishness about his work but also a deadly seriousness such as in his work in Bethlehem and war zones.  I'm giving four stars rather than five solely because I think that the average purchaser would expect there to be a lot more examples of Banksy's work.
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I have absolutely zero artistic talent or knowledge, but that’s perfectly fine with the style and easy flow of Carol Diehl’s new book exploring Banksy’s art, methods (or more appropriately, modus operandi) and social resonance. Ms. Diehl goes into sensible detail but doesn’t get bogged down in minutia. As I read along, I googled many of the artworks she discussed, plus she has numerous illustrations throughout the book.
I must have been living in a cave; I had no idea Banksy had completed a documentary film, owns a hotel and has many writings to his credit. I absolutely love his view on social and political situations and ideas. His ability to travel and complete his art in various locales without detection (or arrest) is impressive. I found this to be an informative yet pleasant book about an extremely interesting subject.
Sincere thanks to NetGalley and MIT Press for an ARC in exchange for my honest review. The publishing date is October 26, 2021.
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Not at all what I expected. This book had a hard time holding my attention, couldn’t finish it. I’m afraid that I can’t recommend this book.
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Liked this a lot, you don't often read such a rousing defence of an artist against any and all comers. I learned a great deal about Banksy, but more so about the self interested parasitic critics relationship with art and Big money.
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“The greatest crimes in the world are not committed by people breaking the rules but by people following the rules. It's people who follow orders that drop bombs and massacre villages.” #Banksy 

My rating: 5/5         

I’ve been intrigued by works of Banksy for many years! Beautiful, fairly simple art that just randomly appears all around the world. It was amazing when his work appeared in Nottingham last year, it felt surreal, shame that it got simply sold in the end, I was really upset, because in my understanding street art belong to the people and streets! 

This book is amazing! There are different interviews, from critiques, haters, artists and supporters of Banksy, I loved quotes that were used all along the book made by the artist. 

Author has made an incredible work, collecting all the resources, I just want to say thank, somehow, I feel grateful for this book. I only wish there were more art pictures, but I guess the main point was explaining sense behind Banksy’s certain art pieces and projects, and what happened behind the scenes and the future of those works. 

It’s great that this book is showing importance of the specific location of his graffiti, because taken away from the original spot, they just loose the meaning to them. 

Just think about it, Banksy is an artist or a group of artists that no one really knows anything about? Crazy huh? In the world of internet and social media, where everyone knows everything about everyone.  

Thank you @Netgalley and @MITpress for E-Arc in exchange for my honest review!
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Pros: This book is a great introduction to Banksy. I’ve followed Banksy’s work for years but learned many new things about the background of some works and themes that tie works together. This book also highlighted that most of Banksy’s work is temporary, which is something I had not thought about before. 

Cons: I would have loved to see more photographs of Banksy’s work in this book. 

Thank you to Goodreads and MIT Press for the opportunity to read this book!
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