In the war zone: Mysterious street artist Banksy immortalizes himself in Ukraine

Banksy has already become active in crisis areas several times. Now he left several works in Ukraine. His visit was received with enthusiasm in the war-torn country and the Ukrainian Defense Ministry has now responded.

The mysterious street artist Banksy has immortalized himself with several works in war-torn Ukraine. The Briton only published photos of one photo on his Instagram channel until Sunday afternoon. But other works in several Ukrainian cities belong to the world-famous artist, whose identity is unknown, according to Britain’s PA news agency, citing Banksy’s PR agency. For example, Banksy left his mark in the capital Kiev and in the badly damaged suburbs of Borodjanka and Irpin.

The image, posted to Instagram, shows a girl seemingly doing a handstand on rubble against the gray wall of a destroyed house. “Borodjanka, Ukraine” reads the accompanying text. The publication on his Instagram channel is traditionally seen as a sign that Banksy is confirming a work like his. According to a reporter for the Ukrainian broadcaster 1+1, the house on which the photo was attached, about half a meter high, was destroyed by a Russian bomb.

Ukrainians were enthusiastic on social networks. “Thank you for inspiring people with your work and for reminding you that the war is not over and that many people, including children, are fighting for freedom,” a user from Ukraine captioned the photo on Instagram.

Banksy: several factories in Ukraine

Borodyanka, northwest of the capital Kiev, was captured by Russian troops on February 24, shortly after the start of the war. In April, Ukrainian units managed to liberate the settlement. Ukraine accuses Russian troops of committing “mass atrocities” in the suburb, as well as in Bucha, Hostomel and Irpin. These include murder, kidnapping, torture and rape.

Banksy art on a war-damaged house.

As confirmed by PA, other works in Ukraine, which are made in the artist’s signature spray-painting style, also belong to Banksy. In Borodyanka, for example, there is a wall on which a child throws an adult man to the ground while he plays judo – apparently a reference to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is an avid judoka.

“We are stronger than David. They are weaker than Goliath,” Ukraine’s Defense Ministry responded on Twitter at work, adding: “Possibly because of Banksy”. A rhythmic gymnast wearing a neck brace and holding a ribbon dances across a hole in a wall in the Kiev suburb of Irpin.Another work shows two children on Kiev’s central Maidan using a metal tank trap as a seesaw.Elsewhere, on the yellow wall of a building, a person can be seen wearing a gas mask and fire extinguisher.

Banksy
A person wearing a gas mask and fire extinguisher can be seen on the yellow wall of a war-damaged building.

Banksy repeatedly sprayed in crisis areas

The famous street performer has also traveled to crisis areas in the past, including the West Bank. He is also committed to helping refugees, including financing a ship for rescue operations in the Mediterranean. Many works are socially critical. Over the summer, several photos Banksy posted on walls on England’s North Sea coast caused a stir. Among them was a rat in an armchair sipping a cocktail. The area was once a popular holiday destination for many Britons but has been economically neglected for decades and is now rather impoverished.

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Banksy’s identity and age remain unknown. When the British University for the Creative Arts awarded him an honorary doctorate, his chair remained empty. The only thing that is fairly certain is that he comes from the western English city of Bristol. His works fetch millions at auctions. However, he repeatedly criticizes the traditional art world with museums and galleries.

Several times people have denied that they are the mysterious artist. However, Banksy’s stay in Ukraine may lead to proof of his identity. Rumors of the British street artist’s presence existed even before his Instagram entry. According to eyewitnesses, the graffiti was applied in Borodyanka on October 30. A Ukrainian told media that the sprayer who was spraying was 45 to 50 years old.

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