Did Banksy Make the NSFW Tony the Tiger Commercials?
WRRV's sister station interviewed an artist from Helsinki who some say is actually the highly secretive street artist named Banksy.
Mysterious parody commercials for Frosted Flakes appeared on the web this month featuring Tony the Tiger dealing with adult problems. In one video, a prostitute complains that her fading looks are hurting her job, but after a visit from Tony and a bowl of Frosted Flakes, she's back in business.
Leinonen and Banksy have been linked before, with some even believing that Leinonen may actually be Banksy himself...
We did some sleuthing and found out that the mastermind behind these videos was an artist by the name of Jani Leinonen. Based in Finland, Leinonen is known for his outrageous art. He once made international headlines after he formed a fictitious food activist group and kidnapped a sculpture of Ronald McDonald, only to have his home raided by the authorities. He's been creating projects that center around corporate mascots and their role in society for quite some time, and is now producing a movie about them.
Most recently, Leinonen was featured as a part of Banksy's Dismaland project, a pop-up art show in Europe featuring purposefully depressing rides and attractions, poking a stick at the self-proclaimed "happiest place on earth." Leinonen and Banksy have been linked before, with some even believing that Leinonen may actually be Banksy himself, or a part of the group that creates the stealth art in Banksy's name.
We asked him all about that, and his answer was oddly cryptic. He said,
It's always interesting to me how creative the receiving end can be and they can interpret the pieces (in) so many ways that I never even thought of...
It certainly wasn't a no. You can listen to the interview as Leinonen explains the process behind some of his other provocative art projects and his current viral video campaign.