Leo Laksi’s Bangkok And Back

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

Graffiti phenomenon – “BNE” in Bangkok and all around the world

with 25 comments

thonglorbne1

Check it out.  The letters “BNE” are found on stickers all over Bangkok.  In my neighborhood there are hundreds of these stickers.  Sometimes the letters are accompanied by Japanese characters.

Some have speculated that the letters are part of a worldwide graffiti movement, for the stickers have been seen all over the world.  During the fall of 2006, San Francisco was plagued by the same stickers.  And so have Tokyo and New York City.  There are a number of explanations for BNE including its use as the three letter airline designation for Brisbane, Australia.

There’s been some great reporting on this phenomenon.  Check out the hyperlinks for more info.

If you want, photograph the stickers you see and I will post them on my blog.

thonglorbne2

thonglorbne3

thonglorbne4

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thonglorbne6

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Written by leolaksi

February 23, 2009 at 6:29 am

25 Responses

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  1. Brillant post!! I’m really impressed by your catchy theme!

    foofoo

    February 23, 2009 at 8:10 pm

  2. So far I haven’t seen any in Seoul but I’m looking!

    leolaksi

    February 23, 2009 at 8:18 pm

  3. Leo, why don’t you make a sticker “leolaksi.wordpress.com” and slap it all over the world? You get around a lot, so it shouldn’t be impossible to build an even larger readership this way 🙂

    myphotoscout

    February 23, 2009 at 11:51 pm

    • now that’s funny!

      leolaksi

      February 24, 2009 at 5:20 am

  4. Not only BNE stickers. See this from a pedestrian bridge on Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ianfuller/3327432903/

    Ian Fuller

    March 6, 2009 at 11:49 pm

    • Ian, that’s something new. wonder what else is out there?

      leolaksi

      March 7, 2009 at 8:37 pm

  5. at Silom.
    BNE BNEBNEBNEBNEBNE

    This is very rare one. you might haven’t seen.
    BNE とっぴー was here.

    Hiro

    March 7, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    • Hiro,

      you’re right about the second one. not seen before. cheers, leo

      leolaksi

      March 7, 2009 at 8:38 pm

  6. found this stickers in Yokohama last week.. live in Bangkok so been notice these stickers all over here..

    http://abstractic.wordpress.com/2009/05/08/bne-yokohama/

    abstractic

    May 8, 2009 at 12:19 pm

  7. Loads in Kuala Lumpur too

    C

    May 15, 2009 at 9:35 am

    • Really? Can you post any photos? Leo

      leolaksi

      May 15, 2009 at 9:41 am

  8. Ban Nuclear Energy

    lodesafun

    May 18, 2009 at 9:24 am

  9. They are also scattered around New York. That’s actually how I came across this site. I saw a sticker on a subway platform in Queens, then saw another one later that day in the L.E.S. and yet another on my way to SoHo. I guess it travels far! Next time I see it, I will take a picture!

    Liz

    June 15, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    • Yeah Liz, lets get a series of photos from around the world. Leo

      leolaksi

      June 16, 2009 at 4:50 am

  10. […] Road in Causeway Bay last night with a friend and as I was taking photos, she spotted the infamous “BNE”.  Of course Bangkok is awash with these stickers and graffiti.  In my travels to other cities, […]

  11. […] must be bound to your bed if you haven’t met BNE yet in Bangkok. BNEwhat?! BNE is everywhere. Mostly sprayed in black neat big letters on houses […]

    King BNE

    July 6, 2009 at 9:40 am

  12. BNE IS ONE PERSON. HE WRITES (HIS GRAFFITI NAME) IS BENET OR BNE ABBREVIATED. BNE STICKERS ARE HIS WAY OF TAGGING. I REPEAT, BNE IS 1 MAN & 1 MAN ONLY. HE TRAVELS ALOOOOTTTTTTTTTTT. HE IS ORIGINALLY FROM BOSTON, MA AREA.

    JARED

    July 10, 2009 at 12:34 am

    • Thanks for info. If he’s the only one responsible, he’s got a lot of energy. There are thousands of stickers and graffiti in Bangkok alone, some that are partially in Japanese. Leo

      leolaksi

      July 10, 2009 at 6:46 am

  13. IT STANDS FOR “BACON N EGGS”
    -JACKET:.

    Jack Mioff

    July 10, 2009 at 10:45 pm

  14. Yeah, BNE is every where in Bangkok. I really wonder what BNE stand for and who make it.

    BKK

    October 16, 2009 at 8:39 pm

  15. TELL you what I have been writing graff for years.. this man really gets up( non stop spraying iceverywhere)
    I ‘m, half thai half american i moved to bkk like 5 years ago and i couldnt belive my eyes now,… BNE is dominating … but he doesnt do any pieces just throw up to get his name up …. but still this guy is becoming a legend !!!!!!
    apokalypse_01@hotmail.com don’t be surprised if you see a man going over sticker or throw up thats my new mission i want to blow this guy out the water

    Ruckus

    October 30, 2009 at 10:33 am

  16. I don’t remember seeing these stickers in Frisco. In my opinion putting up the stickers is not cool. To me they are litter. What is the point of putting up stickers?

    Mario

    December 10, 2009 at 8:31 am

  17. got a couple of “BNE” photos from my new year trip in Chiang Mai for you.

    foofookie

    January 10, 2010 at 11:26 am

    • great. thanks ff.

      Leo

      leolaksi

      January 10, 2010 at 12:41 pm

  18. The two chinese/japanese characters (Kanji) seem to have no clear meaning together in chinese, though I’m certainly no expert. According to the MDGB dictionary site, the chinese meanings of the two chracters are (left to right)

    1. “To Participate”, or else “Ginseng”
    2. “Upon”

    Together they might mean “participate in” or else “on ginseng” – anybody’s guess. But i guess it’s just this guy’s obscure and nonsensical nom de geurre. Maybe just picked at random from fortune cookies to give himself a bit of style and mystery.

    Don’t know if they have exactly the same meaning in japanese. Are there any chinese or japanese speakers out there who can help?

    It’s all over Bangkok, but mostly in areas frequented by tourists or western residents like Sukhumvit and some department stores elsewhere (Tesco-Lotus etc). So probably not a Thai. I guess a westerner, possibly of chinese or japanese origin. Fascinating mystery. Could be something sinister! But why choose a boring name like BNE?

    Yezogomper

    August 6, 2011 at 10:42 pm


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