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<nettime> Tagging Banksy: Using Geographic Profiling to Investigate a Mo
nettime's evil scientist on Fri, 4 Mar 2016 14:08:37 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> Tagging Banksy: Using Geographic Profiling to Investigate a Modern Art Mystery


The pseudonymous artist Banksy is one of the UK’s most successful
contemporary artists, but his identity remains a mystery. Here, we use
a Dirichlet process mixture (DPM) model of geographic profiling, a
mathematical technique developed in criminology and finding increasing
application within ecology and epidemiology, to analyse the spatial
patterns of Banksy artworks in Bristol and London. The model takes as
input the locations of these artworks, and calculates the probability
of ‘offender’ residence across the study area. Our analysis highlights
areas associated with one prominent candidate (e.g., his home),
supporting his identification as Banksy. More broadly, 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.


Hauge, Michelle V., Mark D. Stevenson, D. Kim Rossmo, and Steven C. Le
Comber. 2016. “Tagging Banksy: Using Geographic Profiling to
Investigate a Modern Art Mystery.” Journal of Spatial Science, March,
1–6. doi:10.1080/14498596.2016.1138246.

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