The world renowned graffiti artist Banksy hit the headlines this week, after his controversial new Simpsons intro was shown on US television last Sunday. The Simpsons are well known for using high profile politicians, film stars and musicians as cameo performers in episodes, but this is the first time an artist has ever been asked to storyboard one of TV’s most recognisable intro sequences.
Banksy is certainly no novice when it comes to the realms of controversy. His artwork throughout Bristol and London has frequently been the subject of polarised opinion; some have called his artwork vandalism, a number of council authorities have ordered his works to be destroyed, yet others, including prominent art critics and buyers, cite that Banksy’s use of insightful and often ironic visual/political juxtaposition makes them a work of ‘pure genius’.
The majority of Banksy’s work often contains anti-war, anti-capitalist or anti-establishment messages, and it is primarily for these socio-political reasons that Bansky’s artwork has received such acclaim. In keeping with his controversial style, Banksy recently revamped the Simpsons intro depicting South Korean sweatshop labourers, working in harsh conditions alongside a unicorn and a panda bear, producing animated Simpson’s frames and toys. According to Banksy himself, the storyboard led to delays, disputes over broadcast standards and a threatened walk out by the animation department.