Is Mr. Brainwash a Hoax?

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I thought I liked the movie Exit Through the Gift Shop, but now I'm blown away on a whole other level after reading this clip below from wikipedia on Mr. Brainwash and whether or not he's real.

Mr. Brainwash speculation and theories

Since the release of the film Exit Through The Gift Shop, there has been much speculation that the film and story of Mr. Brainwash are a hoax concocted by Banksy and Shepard Fairey themselves. When Guetta is shown "working," he is only seen splattering paint using aerosol cans to haphazardly color images and clumsily attempting to paste up a poster. Other aspects of the Mr. Brainwash character seem deliberately comical, such as his being pushed in a wheelbarrow after supposedly breaking his foot.

The Times of London noted that "The blogs buzzed with rumours: that Mr Brainwash is nothing but a front for Banksy; even that he is Banksy." Fast Company concludes "The whole thing, it's clear now, was an intricate prank being pulled on all of us by Banksy, who has never publicly revealed his identity, with Fairey as his accomplice. ... [His work] looks like Banksy trying not to look like Banksy..."

Some suggest that Fairey and Banksy have been artificially inflating up the sales of Mr. Brainwash's work. According to Rebecca Cannon, Mr. Brainwash's work hasn't sold as well on independent forums. "With both shows held outside of commercial galleries, no professional dealers have had their reputation on the line in making fake claims of high sales. However, if Guetta is a hoax, there also exists the possibility that these artworks are actually produced by Banksy himself, in a style deliberately intended to suggest inferior artistic skill.

As the movie opened in North America, in April 2010, The Boston Globe movie reviewer Ty Burr found it to be quite entertaining as a farce and awarded it four stars. He dismissed the notion of the film being a "put on" saying "I’m not buying it; for one thing, this story’s too good, too weirdly rich, to be made up. For another, the movie’s gently amused scorn lands on everyone."

Read the rest on wikipedia

Postscript from Six Years Later:

Hilarious addendum - email I was sent in 2017, six years later. Apparently, this article is on page 3 of google's Mr. Brainwash Hoax search. I have no idea why. Link leads to their site. So this either is an incredibly well executed long term lie, or real. Who knows.

Hilarious addendum - email I was sent in 2017, six years later. Apparently, this article is on page 3 of google's Mr. Brainwash Hoax search. I have no idea why. Link leads to their site. So this either is an incredibly well executed long term lie, or real. Who knows.

ArtistsJeremy Shuback