New Banksy Brexit mural unveiled on day of French vote
A mural of a workman, chisel in hand, chipping away at one of the gold stars on the European Union flag has appeared in Dover, the ferry port that connects the UK with France.
The Brexit-themed artwork, attributed to street artist Banksy, was unveiled on Sunday morning as French citizens across the channel went to the polls to vote in an election that placed Europe's future in the balance.
The victory of president-elect Emmanuel Macron triggered a sigh of relief among European leaders, who hope he will help strengthen the embattled bloc ahead of negotiations with the UK over its exit from the union. The pro-European centrist topped the polls against far-right, Eurosceptic politician Marine Le Pen, avoiding the prospect of a "Frexit" -- or French exit from the EU.
Locals and fans guessed that Banksy was behind the mural before the photo of the fractured EU flag appeared on Banksy's official Instagram account and website over the weekend, confirming his involvement.
The anonymous graffiti artist has previously waded into French politics, traveling to Calais in 2015 and covering several walls in "the Jungle" refugee camp with works providing a commentary on the refugee crisis. One of the murals depicted the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who was the son of a Syrian migrant.
Never one to shy away from complex subjects, Banksy recently opened a boutique art hotel in Bethlehem. The Walled of Hotel is situated in Area C, a portion of the West Bank under Israeli control, and is currently hosting guests. The hotel features 9 uniquely decorated rooms, a presidential suite and an exhibition area. "Walls are hot right now, but I was into them long before Trump made it cool," Banksy said in his statement.