British street artist Banksy’s work, which was removed from the wall of an apartment building in the town of Hostomel, has resurfaced. As reported by Ukrainian mediathe part of the facade with the image was seized and eight people were arrested for stealing the mural.
According to Ukrainian authorities, on Friday the group removed the mural depicting a person in a bathrobe holding a gas mask and holding a fire extinguisher. The reclusive artist had attached it to a house wall next to the charred remains of a window in a settlement on the outskirts of Kiev.
“They cut the work out of the wall of a house destroyed by the Russians,” she said Kyiv Post a telegram post by Kiev governor Oleksiy Kuleba. Next to it, a photo shows the hole left by the thieves in the wall.
The artwork has since been secured and is being held in a police station in Boiarka, a city in the Kyiv region. According to the governor, the artwork itself is apparently not damaged: “The picture is in good condition and is in the hands of the authorities,” says Kuleba.
Kiev Police Chief Andriy Nebytov said the eight suspects had been identified. They are between 27 and 60 years old and come from Kyiv and Cherkassy, about 200 kilometers south-east of the capital.
As confirmed by Nebytov, other works believed to be by Banksy are under police protection. The street artist has taken to Instagram over the past few months for a series of graffiti works on ruins that have been badly hit by Russian shelling – in Borodianka and Hostomel as well as in cities like Bucha and Irpin.
Including a handstand gymnast that Banksy painted on the wall of a destroyed building in Borodianka in November. A bearded man scrubbing himself in a bathtub.
The image of a young boy throwing a strong adult to the ground in judo is also part of it. It can be understood as an allusion to the size relationship between David and Goliath. Or Putin, a black belt holder, who is being tricked by a supposedly inferior opponent.