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Banksy’s “The Thinker Monkey” first appeared in Madrid, and has since become one of the artist’s most celebrated and reproduced images. The piece employs his oft-used monkey as a stand-in for the over-lauded traits of being human. By frequently citing our own esteemed place in the hierarchy of living things, humankind both achieves majestic things and commits heinous crimes. Banksy’s contemplative ape is also an adaptation of Auguste Rodin’s iconic bronze sculpture ‘The Thinker’. Having first appeared in 1880 as part of a larger sculptural piece illustrating the gates to hell from Dante’s Inferno, ‘The Thinker’ was turned into at least 28 stand-alone reproductions in 1904. Ever since, the piece has stood as a testament to the resurgence of the Renaissance ideals of poetry, intellect, and rational thought. In Banksy’s take on the piece, he imbues these noble faculties on a monkey, who looks longingly across a street in Madrid, where the piece first appeared. The thoughtful ape has also appeared in countless locations across the globe and is a perfect example of the artist’s unique stencil style, which allowed him to finish the piece quickly whilst ensuring a consistent level of artistic quality. Indeed, Rodin’s ‘The Thinker’ has been a recurring source of inspiration for the artist. In 2007, Banksy created a pastiche of the original sculpture. Seemingly not dissimilar from the original, the artist captioned the familiar stone plinth with the words ‘The Drinker’, thus turning the contemplative stance of the figure into one of sloppy-eyed inebriation.