03 December 2007

On the Usefulness of Walls for Politics (6)

A local resident takes a picture of a Banksy art work
showing a soldier being frisked by a young girl.
Photograph © picturesonwalls.com/PA.

The highly controversial wall, constructed by Israel under the
claim that it provides security for its people, has been condemned
by activists and declared illegal by the United Nations.
Photograph © Emilio Morenatti/AP.

Banksy's latest publicity stunt is timed to coincide with
today's opening of an exhibition of his work, and that of
other artists, in the city which aims to bring tourists
back to Bethlehem over the Christmas period.
Photograph © picturesonwalls.com/PA.

International graffiti artists have been leaving their
mark on the eight metre-high concrete barrier.
Photograph © Emilio Morenatti/AP.

Banksy's signature rat holds a sling and looks up at the barrier.
Photograph © picturesonwalls.com/PA.

A Palestinian man walks by a section of the security
wall decorated by an anonymous graffiti artist.
Photograph © Emilio Morenatti/AP.

I have lifted these images and captions from a slideshow in The Guardian today; while I do not find Banksy's work to be profound, it seems gratuitous to dismiss it, especially in this context, as a "publicity stunt." As an aside, you may recall that Emilio Morenatti is a Spanish photographer who Gaza was kidnapped while working in Gaza in 2006.

P.S.: (Added 5 December 07) At the BBC you can find this slideshow showing more work by Banksy and other artists in Bethlehem.

P.S.: And another, final installment, from The Guardian:

Bethlehem, West Bank: Illusive (sic) British
graffiti artist Banksy's new works.


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Anonymous Rion said...

In that last photo, I'm pretty sure the pasteup on the left isn't a Banksy. It absolutely looks like the work of JR and Ladj Ly, who are based in Paris (though there's nothing about any West Bank projects on their site): http://www.28millimetres.com/index_en.html

They also have great vids on their site about their Paris projects. Totally worth watching.

16 December, 2007 04:03  

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