Banksy, the elusive British street artist, has revealed a mural on a bombed-out building outside Ukraine's capital, giving rise to speculations that he was in the war-torn country. In an Instagram post, the world-famous graffiti artist shared three images of the artwork. The first mural depicts a gymnast performing a handstand amid the ruins of a demolished building in the town of Borodyanka northwest of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv. The other two pictures show the ruins of the destroyed building, which was under attack in the early days of Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.
He posted the images with a simple caption reading "Borodyanka, Ukraine."
See the images here:
According to a BBC report, Russian soldiers had occupied Borodyanka for weeks in the initial phase of the war, before it was eventually liberated by Ukraine in April.
Ukrainians have hailed the graffiti as a symbol of their country's invincibility. “It is a symbol that we are unbreakable. “And our country is unbreakable.,” 32-year-old Oleksiy Savochka told AFP on Saturday, referring to the graffiti. Another reacted to the images on Instagram and thanked Banksy for creating them, saying how ‘'art can heal and push society for meaningful actions. ‘'
The user wrote, ‘'I live in Kyiv, Ukraine and I am a huge fan of yours, Banksy. When I saw your new work I was so excited, I'm still. Thank you for inspiring people with your work, and reminding that war is not over and many people, including children are struggling for freedom. I also can see in comments many Iranian people and want to express my support as well. Art can heal and push society for meaningful actions. Art is power. Here in Ukraine, we have difficulties with electricity after Russian bombs, but not with power. Thank you, Banksy.
Several other new murals with a similar style were also spotted in the area and are suspected to have been created by Banksy, but the British artist has not publicly claimed credit. One of them depicts a man being flipped during a judo match with a little boy, while another showed two children using a metal tank trap as a seesaw.
Banksy is one of the world's most famous artists, who remains completely anonymous. His street art often draws attention to social issues by adding elements of darkness to otherwise joyful scenes. However, despite being internationally renowned, not much is known about him. His thought-provoking artworks often fetch whopping amounts at auctions.