A two-sided graffiti piece, one side depicting a child tasting the falling snow, the other revealing that the snow is in fact smoke and embers from a fire, appeared on two walls of a steelworker's garage in Port Talbot in December. Banksy then revealed that the painting was in fact his via an Instagram video soundtracked by the festive children's song 'Little Snowflake'. Many fans of the artist went to see the painting and Plaid Cymru councillor for Aberavon, Nigel Thomas Hunt, stated that the town was "buzzing" with speculation that the work was Banksy's. The owner of the garage, Ian Lewis, said that he had lost sleep over fears that the image would be vandalised. A plastic screen, partially funded by Michael Sheen, was installed to protect the mural, but was attacked by a "drunk halfwit". Extra security guards were subsequently drafted to protect the graffiti piece.
Banksy is an anonymous England-based street artist, vandal, political activist, and film director. His satirical street art and subversive epigrams combine dark humour with graffiti executed in a distinctive stenciling technique. His works of political and social commentary have been featured on streets, walls, and bridges of cities throughout the world. Banksy's work grew out of the Bristol underground scene, which involved collaborations between artists and musicians. Banksy says that he was inspired by 3D, a graffiti artist who later became a founding member of the English musical group Massive Attack.
Banksy's works have dealt with various political and social themes, including anti-war, anti-consumerism, anti-fascism, anti-imperialism, anti-authoritarianism, anarchism, nihilism, and existentialism. Additionally, the components of the human condition that his works commonly critique are greed, poverty, hypocrisy, boredom, despair, absurdity, and alienation. Although Banksy's works usually rely on visual imagery and iconography to put forth their message, Banksy has made several politically related comments in their various books. In summarising his list of "people who should be shot", he listed "Fascist thugs, religious fundamentalists, (and) people who write lists telling you who should be shot." While facetiously describing his political nature, Banksy declared that "Sometimes I feel so sick at the state of the world, I can't even finish my second apple pie."
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