Banksy is the world’s most famous street artist — although AOC believes he’s rivaled by JR today. Both artists have taken on the problems of Palestine. Now Banksy has returned to Palestine — specifically Gaza — making a satirical travel advertisement for Gaza. ‘Make this the year YOU discover a new destination,’ the video begins. ‘Welcome to Gaza.’
Banksy’s ‘Welcome to Gaza’ video
The video centers on the destruction of Gaza associated with Israel’s 2014 Operation Protective Edge, an Israeli military operation that targeted Hamas militants but also brought massive destruction to an already deeply-wounded Gaza.
The black hooded Banksy stencils a weeping Greek figure that some liken to Niobe while others see Rodin’sThe Thinker. With a hand on her head, the woman appears as if she is weeping. It is titled Bomb damage, Gaza City. Another piece shows images of children swinging on a fairground ride, which is actually a surveillance tower, and the last one is a painting of a cute kitten playing with a coiled ball of rusted metal.
The cat in particular seems totally out of context, but there is a method to Banksy’s madness. The artists explained: ‘A local man came up and said ‘Please - what does this mean?’ I expained that I wanted to highlight the destruction in Gaza by posting photos on my website — but on the internet people only look at pictures of kittens.’ And so Banksy has given us a kitten to share on Facebook and Instagram.
Both Banksy and JR are always savvy. The kitten approach is sad but very true. And so this kitten will move to our FB page.