arts

Banksy proposes a new statue that will make 'everyone happy'

Updated 10th June 2020
Banksy re-imagines a controversial Bristol memorial as an act of protest
Credit: Banksy/Instagram
Banksy proposes a new statue that will make 'everyone happy'
Written by Karina Tsui, CNN
It was only a matter of time before Banksy weighed in.
On Sunday, Black Lives Matter protesters in Bristol, UK, pulled down the bronze statue of 17th-century slave trader Edward Colston, and then dumped the figure into the River Avon. Demonstrators in the estimated 10,000-person gathering cheered, while others called the dramatic act, "mob rule."
The statue has stood in Bristol's city center since 1895 but has become increasingly controversial -- Colston is regarded as both a revered philanthropist and reviled slave trader -- with petitions created to demand for its removal.
Responding to both critics and supporters of the statue's removal, street artist Banksy, who is believed to be from Bristol, took to Instagram to post a new work on the subject.
But the illustration, which Banksy explained "caters to those who miss the statue and others who don't," makes an alternative proposal for the site: erecting a statue of the protest act itself.
"We drag him out the water, put him back on the plinth, tie cable round his neck and commission some life-size bronze statues of protesters in the act of pulling him down. Everyone happy. A famous day commemorated," Banksy wrote on Instagram.
Over the weekend, the anonymous artist had posted a work responding to the Black Lives Matter movement. In it, a framed portrait of a black figure is set with flowers and a candle. The edge of an American flag hanging over the portrait has been lit on fire. He wrote: "People of colour are being failed by the system. The white system. Like a broken pipe flooding the apartment of the people living downstairs.
Banksy unveils art in support of Black Lives Matter
"This is a white problem. And if white people don't fix it, someone will have to come upstairs and kick the door in," the artist added.