Why make bananas?

As a kid I was fascinated by primates. Fast-forward years later to the first painting I ever attempted. Staring at that blank canvas, I was initially stumped as to what to paint but quickly landed on the idea of a collage of primates, one of which was a gorilla. As I swiped my brush, loaded with paint, across the brow of the gorilla, I knew I was hooked on painting for good and a by-product of that revelation was that I had a new muse. The ‘Danko Gorilla’, launched originally in 2003, has taken on various forms and iterations–continuing to evolve, lockstep with my work. The Danko Gorilla has been populated all over the world, through my art, prints, t-shirts and stickers. (Read more about the story of the Danko Gorilla here.)

Obviously Bananas and primates go hand in hand, so it’s not so unusual for them to also show up in my artwork – like in my “Space Ape” mural on the westside of Los Angeles. When the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs were released there was no way I wasn’t getting an Ape. It was an NFT I felt deeply connected to. Soon after I began conceptualizing my own genesis NFT project. With Apes proliferating my origin story, and now the metaverse, it seemed natural that I needed to create a collection of bananas – as bananas already feature prominently in my work.


Created in partnership with Lexus, Beauty Earth & GiveWith.