Famed British street artist Banksy had a busy weekend, putting up two (or one confirmed and one suspected) pieces in the UK. Both pieces display his trademark visual style and biting social commentary.
The first, which appeared Sunday, depicts three stylized government agents listening in on a phone booth with antiquated surveillance equipment. The piece turned up in Cheltenham in southwestern England, the home of the UK’s Government Communications Headquarters, which has been embroiled in a wide-reaching surveillance scandal with its U.S. counterpart, the National Security Agency.
Residents say they saw a group of men packing away a white tarp into a white van and drive off around 7:30 a.m. Sunday. Karen Smith, 48, who lives in the building the mural is painted on, says she saw the men packing up. She says people are split on whether it’s actually a Banksy piece, but personally likes it and says it “livens the street up a bit.”
The Mirror reports that the GCHQ, which the artist is clearly criticizing, says they “are not qualified critics... (but) are as intrigued as the rest of the residents of Cheltenham about the appearance of the mysterious work.”
Another classic Banksy piece, making us question ourselves and the changing world around us. The location of "Mobile Lovers" is unknown, but suspected to be somewhere in the UK.