Using ‘geographic profiling’, scientists believe that artist Robin Gunningham is in fact Banksy.
Scientists at Queen Mary University of London claim to have solved the art world’s biggest mystery, just who is Banksy? After using a technique often used to catch serial criminals, the scientist say they can confirm Banksy is in fact artist Robin Gunningham, who has long be rumoured to be the man behind the graffiti.
Has Banksy finally be unmasked?
Using geographic profiling, the team said they identified obvious patterns between artworks credited to Banksy and the movements of Gunningham in London and Bristol. The selected locations, which included pubs, playing fields and residential addresses, were all said to lead back to Gunningham.
Gunningham was first reported to be Banksy back in 2008, but the artist’s real identity has never been confirmed. The team’s research was published in the Journal of Spatial Science after a short delay, due to concerns from Banksy’s legal team.
The scientists also say that geographic profiling could be used to help in counter-terrorism investigations, by studying the locations of more minor acts that terrorists often engage in, including graffiti.
The report states: “These results support previous suggestions that analysis of minor terrorism-related acts (e.g., graffiti) could be used to help locate terrorist bases before more serious incidents occur, and provides a fascinating example of the application of the model to a complex, real-world problem.”
Speaking to the BBC, scientist Steve Le Comber, a co-author of the report said: "I'd be surprised if it's not (Gunningham), even without our analysis, but it's interesting that the analysis offers additional support for it.”
"What I thought I would do is pull out the 10 most likely suspects, evaluate all of them and not name any. But it rapidly became apparent that there is only one serious suspect, and everyone knows who it is. If you Google Banksy and Gunningham you get something like 43,500 hits."