In this print, Banksy uses one of his most famous symbols, the rat, which references the famous French graffiti artist Blek Le Rat. Banksy regularly uses the rat as a motif in a number of his artworks - whether this is pure coincidence or whether it’s due to the fact that “rat” is an anagram of art is not certain. The image shows a rat in Banksy’s signature stencil-style, wearing a Peace chain, holding a placard that drips in red (or pink) graffiti reading, ‘Because I’m Worthless.'
As with all Banksy artworks, there are multiple interpretations of this much sought-after screen print. Banksy famously uses the rat to symbolise 'the masses' and working public at large, thus representing the way that society deems such “vermin” as worthless. However, Banksy is also slightly mocking the L’Oreal strapline ‘Because I’m Worth it’, which might be seen as a subversive nod to neoliberal consumer capitalism and its relationship to the exploitation of the working class.
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