Thursday, December 12, 2019

Banksy Highlights Homelessness

A homeless man lays on a bench next to a mural by Banksy in Birmingham, UK, December 09, 2019, in this picture obtained from social media @banksy/Instagram via Reuters 

Elusive British street artist Banksy has highlighted the issue of rough sleeping in a seasonal mural showing two reindeer pulling a homeless man on a street-bench sleigh. 

The artwork, created in his trademark stenciled graffiti style, appeared in Birmingham, UK over the weekend. 

A video posted on his Instagram shows a bearded man named Ryan reclining on the bench, echoing the traditional image of Santa on his sleigh.

His post mentions: "God bless 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 said video attracted nearly 3 million views on Instagram in the first 24 hours, and created a buzz in the city. 

I read that works by Banksy, who has never revealed his identity, are in demand and in fact, have rocketed in value. 

“Devolved Parliament”, a Banksy painting of chimps sitting in the UK parliament was sold for £9,879,500 ($12.2 million) – after a 13-minute bidding battle – on October 03 at the London auction house Sotheby’s. 

However, the record-breaking price was seemingly questioned by the artist who posted a quote from Robert Hughes on his Instagram account, stating: "Instead of being the common property of humankind the way a book is, art becomes the particular property of someone who can afford it". 

The painting is nearly four metres (13ft) wide and is the largest known canvas by Banksy. Image credit: Sotheby’s 

This particular work was originally painted in 2009 – and Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s European head of contemporary art, had noted that the work is even more relevant today considering the country’s political disarray. 

European champions Liverpool needed a point when they met Austrian side FC Red Bull Salzburg on Tuesday to be certain of a place in the Champions League last 16. 

Somehow, there was stalemate at the break.

And then Sadio Mane drew the opposing side’s goalkeeper out before crossing to Naby Keita for the opener in the fifty-seventh minute. And a mere 100 seconds later, the ball was back in the net after Mohamed Salah sensationally finished the narrowest of angles. 

YES, WE WON 2-0! 

It is noteworthy to mention here that Liverpool have progressed from all three of their Champions League group stages under Jurgen Klopp. They had been knocked out at this stage in their previous two Champions League campaigns before his arrival. 

Liverpool’s next challenge is on Saturday when they host Watford and looking to maintain or extend their eight-point lead at the top. Go Liverpool, go!

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