Banksy’s Latest Mural
By Rachel Brown
On December 19th, 2018, Port Talbot, Wales was gifted with a Banksy mural. Port Talbot is a steel town, and the World Health Organization declared them one of the most polluted cities in the United Kingdom. So, it would only make sense that the artist’s mural is an exploration of people’s disregard for climate change.
The mural is across a corner of a garage, almost a 3D diptych. On one side, a child sticks their tongue out to taste snowflakes, but around the corner, it is revealed that those snowflakes are really ash or presumably burnt trash. This sharp contrast between the innocence of a child and the burning trash is almost startling for the viewer.
The entirety of the mural is in black and white except for the child’s tongue and the fire. The intensity of the fire could be taken as the urgency of the issue of pollution, and the brightness of the tongue draws attention to the next generation’s consumption of our current pollution, and the danger we put the future in.
Banksy posted the work on his Instagram, linked here. The video provides a backdrop of the polluted skies of Port Talbot, with grey factories in the background. His caption reads “Seasons Greetings,” and as we approach winter, it serves as a reminder to be conscious of our environmental impact this season.