Banksy confirmed seven new murals around Ukraine. Located in Kyiv, Borodyanka, Irpin, and other locations, the works are the famous street artist's first public murals in over a year.
Some murals appeared on destroyed buildings, including one of a gymnast doing a handstand on a pile of rubble, graffiti'd on a bombed-out building. Another shows a child throwing a man—who some believe to resemble Russian President Vladimir Putin—to the ground in a judo match. Yet another shows a woman in her dressing gown wearing a gas mask and holding a fire extinguisher.
The choice of Borodyanka, a city located northwest of Kyiv, for Banksy murals is a notable one; after Russian forces invaded, civilian areas were bombed heavily.
Much of Banksy's artwork has historically featured children. As My Art Broker describes, "Banksy, a master of telling a story with the sparest of stencil marks, knows how powerful the image of a child can be in evoking empathy in the viewer and often draws on the universal experience of childhood in his murals and prints. And while Banksy’s children often seem mournful or lost they can also be figures of joy and humour in works that embrace satire to poke fun at those in power."
Ukrainians have applauded the work. Anton Gerashchenko, an advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, tweeted, "Ukraine today is the center of attention, center of resistance, freedom, true art .@banksy confirmed that he created seven murals in different parts of Ukraine, including Borodianka, Irpin and Kyiv. It means a great deal to us. We are so grateful, Sir!" (Though Gerashchenko used "Sir," Banksy's identity has yet to be confirmed.)
Ukraine today is the center of attention, center of resistance, freedom, true art.@banksy confirmed that he created seven murals in different parts of Ukraine, including Borodianka, Irpin and Kyiv.
It means a great deal to us. We are so grateful, Sir! pic.twitter.com/LNFDIbk3jG
— Anton Gerashchenko (@Gerashchenko_en) November 15, 2022
It remains to be seen whether or not Banksy will continue creating murals in Ukraine.
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