On my mind

Llanelli Star - - LETTERS - With Gra­ham Davies

MY daily morn­ing rit­ual in­cludes ex­am­in­ing my body to see if any­thing has dropped off in the night and check­ing to see if there is a ‘Banksy’ on the side of my house.

If the lat­ter, then it will be chipped off, wrapped up and de­liv­ered un­der po­lice es­cort to the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Burry Port.

That will be en­tirely in keep­ing with the phi­los­o­phy of Banksy, the master of graf­fiti, painter, ac­tivist, film­maker and provo­ca­teur, whose re­cent per­cep­tive Port Tal­bot creation shows a child in a bob­ble hat ap­par­ently en­joy­ing a snow shower, but which is in re­al­ity ash bil­low­ing from a burn­ing wooden crate.

Sub­ver­sive, anony­mous and sub-cul­tural, Banksy has rub­bished the snooty bour­geois world of in­nocu­ous art and used his set of sten­cils and spray paint to con­nect with ordinary peo­ple.

What he called the low level dis­sent of graf­fiti was re­placed by the street art power of the multi-lay­ered sten­cil, which gave him more op­por­tu­nity for po­lit­i­cal edge, satire and dark hu­mour, much in­spired by the orig­i­nal sten­cil pi­o­neer, Blek Le Rat.

We await con­fir­ma­tion that Banksy has brought his cans into Llanelli and painted a rat in Vaughan Street.

Nei­ther is there con­fir­ma­tion that it is the first at­tempt at street art by Banksy’s al­legedly Welsh son, Ieuan ap Banksy, who was seen leav­ing hur­riedly with a pa­per bag over his head.

In the mean­time, de­spite the re­moval of the enig­matic Swirl Cone on the Bynea round­about, Llanelli can con­tinue to en­joy its ex­ist­ing street sculp­tures.

My favourite has to be the bronze ‘In­dus­trial Sym­phony’, si­t­u­ated in East Gate near the Ffwrnes Theatre. There is noth­ing ba­nal about this piece of peo­ple’s art, but a po­tent trib­ute to the men and women who worked in the tin­plate in­dus­try over many gen­er­a­tions.

Fol­low Gra­ham on Twit­[email protected]

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