Anonymous Street Artist, Banksy, Strikes Again


Lily Earwood, Contributor

The anonymous artist by the name of Banksy has struck again. A new piece of street art brings attention to the homeless and their individuality. On Dec. 9, two spray-painted reindeer on a brick wall pulling an actual bench appeared in Birmingham, England.

The artist posted on his Instagram page a video of a homeless man named Ryan, lying down in the bench to sleep, using his bag as a pillow. This video got over two million views in only seven hours.

In the description of the video, Banksy said, “Birmingham. In the 20 minutes we filmed Ryan on this bench passers-by gave him a hot drink, two chocolate bars and a lighter – without him ever asking for anything.”

The artist, Banksy, is known as an anonymous street artist who sprays graffiti art in many places of the world such as the wall of a garage in the middle of nowhere or the side of a rundown subway station wall. Banksy has always been mysterious because no one ever knows when and where he’s going to strike next.

His murals have come up in multiple locations around the world including London, Jerusalem, and Los Angeles. Additionally, Banksy’s artwork usually brings out a problem in the world like pollution and other serious topics.

According to CBS News, Luke Crane, who works in the city’s Jewelry Quarter Business Improvement District, stated, “I think it comes at a great time of year. We obviously didn’t know it was coming, but what a great time.” Crane continued on to explain how the piece of street art is about the homelessness in the city and “giving in the time of need,” (CBS News).

Not only does the holiday art represent the homeless, it also allows the homeless to to able to represent themselves. The piece of work gives people individuality. Also, not every person who will sit on the bench is poor or in need. This gives Banksy’s work a whole other field of meaning (The Guardian).

Sadly, a vandal already defaced the mural hours after it appeared by adding large red noses to both of reindeer’s snouts. Many people surrounding the artwork tried to persuade the unidentified man from vandalizing the artwork, however, the man went onward to add the unwanted noses anyway. An onlooker says that a woman tried to stop the man from spraying on the bright red paint but her efforts were of no use (Independent).