10 September 2010

A Movie Recommendation: "Exit Through The Gift Shop"

Exit Through the Gift Shop is a documentary of pieced together film done by Thierry Guetta, an unknown French filmmaker turned street-artist. The documentary chronicles early days and expeditions of now well-known street artsists, including Banksy and Shepard Fairey.

Banksy caught my interest several years ago and soon after I found myself interested in Obey (or Shepard Fairey), so when I heard about this movie that supposedly would have footage of the artists actually preparing, installing, painting, and developing their art, I was very excited.

Like a kid in a candy shop, I sat there in the offbeat Little Art Theatre in Yellow Springs, OH with a smile plastered to my face the entire time. Watching some of the most fascinating artists I've heard of create their art was fabulous. Enjoying camera 'face' time with both Banksy and Fairey was simply joy to me. I enjoyed that in spite of the intimate interviews, Banksy's identity remained anonymous as his face and voice were disguised throughout the film.

What the movie really ended up being about was the filmmaker himself though. Banksy suggests to Thierry, the filmmaker, that he try making art and both Thierry's life and the film begin to spiral in a whole new direction. Thierry takes on an alter ego persona as Mr. Brainwash (or MBW) and begins making art, putting together a gallery show, and becoming quite a character himself. While I didn't necessarily care for the tale of MBW it was great fun watching him work in his studio and work on putting together the gallery for his largescale art show. This part of the film also provided many laughs for the audience as Banksy and Fairey poke a little fun at MBW.

All that being said, I say - go see it! Or even pick it up for your colllection when its out of theatres.

And if you're curious about a few other commentaries (which may spoil your perspective if you haven't seen it), check these out:

"Here's why the Banksy Movie is a Banksy Prank" -Fast Company
"Review" -Gatsby, Flicks


  1. I thought the movie was fab, mister brainwash is a clever invention that took on a life of it's own and was part of Banksy's statement about the art world. I say no more. :)

  2. i'm looking forward to the promise period in which your blog is about to "blow up." :)