Banksy in the annual Time’s list of the 100 most influential people

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Source: The Irish Times – 30.4.2010

GRAFFITI ARTIST Banksy has been named one of the world’s most influential people by Time magazine, alongside Robert Pattinson, Ricky Gervais, Simon Cowell and Sir Elton John.

The annual Time 100 list of “the people who most affect our world” includes American political figures such as Sarah Palin, Barack Obama and Bill Clinton as well as this year’s big Oscar winners, Kathryn Bigelow and Sandra Bullock.

Chelsea striker Didier Drogba is in the line-up of 100 people, in the “heroes” category.

Paying tribute to Mr Clinton on Time ’s website, U2 frontman Bono said: “We’ve all got reasons to be thankful that presidents can be rock stars.” Gervais said: “I am both flattered and honoured. I promise to use my powers for good and not evil. And I declare May 1st World Gervais Day. Thank you.”

Musicians Lady Gaga and Prince are also included, as is fashion designer Marc Jacobs.

Banksy pulled in almost 4,000 visitors a day to the Banksy vs Bristol Museum event at the City Museum and Art Gallery last summer. The mysterious figure is included in the “artists” category, alongside Gervais, Cowell, Sir Elton and Twilight heart-throb Pattinson.

In March, Banksy appeared in a “top 30” league table of global exhibition and museum attendance figures compiled by the Art Newspaper.

Artist Shepard Fairey said on Time ’s website that Banksy has an ability “to make almost anyone very uncomfortable.

“He doesn’t ignore boundaries; he crosses them to prove their irrelevance.”

Billy Elliot director Stephen Daldry said Sir Elton is “a proud, sober, married gay man who got there only after years of pain and unrelenting public scrutiny”.

Pattinson was described on the website as “a bit of a weirdo, frankly, in the best sense” by Chris Weitz, director of The Twilight Saga: New Moon . The full list and related tributes appear in the May 10th issue of Time, which hits the shops tomorrow. – (PA)

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