Banksy admitted on social media that he was in Ukraine in November, showing his support for the beleaguered nation through seven murals.
One showed a gymnast girl standing on her hands in a pile of rubble. Another, an old man, took a shower in a bombed-out apartment building.
And in the third picture, a young boy throws an adult man to the ground during a judo match, in a clear reference to the judo-loving Russian president.
The fourth image is of a lady standing on a chair, wearing a gas mask, and a fire extinguisher at the ready.
Yesterday, the lady’s painting was attempted to be stolen.
The governor of the Kyiv region, Oleksij Kuleba, told the Reuters news agency that a gang tried to cut through the outer part of the wall on the wall, in order to take the lady with them.
Unfortunately for the perpetrators, they were noticed and reported to the police. Thus they were caught in the act and the carved piece of wall was seized by the police.
The governor says the mural is intact and is now with the police.
– These paintings are the last in a series of symbols of our fight against the enemy. We will do our best to preserve these graffiti works, as a symbol of our victory,” Oleksij Kuleba told Reuters.
Few artists know who he is
The British artist – whose real identity is unknown – is the most famous graffiti artist in the world.
At auction, some of the artworks fetched more than NOK 100 million.
The paintings often contain a political message combined with a somewhat irreverent sense of humor.
In 2019, a large Banksy painting depicting British politicians as chimpanzees in the British Parliament sold for just over NOK 111 million at a Sotheby’s auction in London.
The figure was probably NOK 100 million more than the previous price record, which had been set the previous year. But the buyer, who paid NOK 11 million, was shocked to see that the “Girl with Balloon” picture had torn itself apart through a mechanism hidden in the frame.
Escape using the emergency exit door
This is not the first time Bansky has gone to conflict zones to show his solidarity.
Murals painted by the British can be found in Bethlehem and Jerusalem, as well as in major cities such as New York, Paris and London.
Nor is it the first time someone has tried to steal Banksy’s work. In 2019, the emergency exit door at the concert venue Bataclan was stolen.
Banksy painted a sad girl on the door. The girl was painted on one of the emergency exits in the concert hall where Islamist militants killed 90 people during a concert on the evening of November 13, 2015.
The image of the door was found again the following year on an unoccupied farmhouse in the Abruzzo region of Italy. Eight people were sentenced for theft.
“Coffee trailblazer. Certified pop culture lover. Infuriatingly humble gamer.”