Banksy art redecorates Hollywood
Published 18/02/2011 | 11:16
Graffiti artist Banksy has been causing mischief in Los Angeles as a series of stencils have appeared in the run-up to the Oscars.
The shadowy art guerilla is thought to be behind the images which have been sprayed on walls and billboards, including a pyromaniac Charlie Brown and a cocktail-swigging Mickey Mouse.
Banksy is up for an Oscar next weekend with his film Exit Through The Gift Shop, a hot tip to win the best documentary prize.
And the appearance of the works has led to speculation that the artist - who guards his identity and often wears a mask - may be in town for the ceremony.
Much of his street art has been around London, although he has visited numerous other towns. His works on canvas are much in demand, with stars such as Angelina Jolie among those who have bought them.
The new works have been scattered across LA, including a university building, Beverly Hills and the Sunset Strip.
One painting adapted a billboard poster to add a cartoon of a drunk Mickey Mouse swigging from a Martini glass, with his arm around a woman, alongside a drug-addled Minnie Mouse. However the poster was removed from the site in Hollywood within hours and the space is now blank.
Another features a child pointing an automatic weapon at a no-parking sign, while in a further stencil, a dog is seen urinating on the corner of a grey concrete wall - spraying a huge arc of yellow paint.
He is also thought to be behind an image of Charlie Brown with a cigarette in his mouth about to pour petrol on to a fire.
Banksy has often appeared with a hood or hat to hide his face, but Oscars bosses say that if he wins the award next Sunday, he will not be allowed to take the stage to accept it in disguise. The award may be given instead to the film's executive producer.