The new work just appeared overnight in an industrial Welsh town
Locals in the Welsh town of Port Talbot woke up to an early Christmas present on Wednesday morning: a new painting by Banksy.
After a brief period of suspense and speculation, the mysterious street artist confirmed the work as genuine by posting it on his website in the late afternoon. A separate post on his verified Instagram account featured the new work, with the artist commenting: “season’s greetings.”
“There were people coming here all night” to see the artwork, property owner Ian Lewis told the BBC. “I am very pleased, I think it is a smashing bit of artwork. It is good for the town and I just want to protect it, and it is here for everybody.”
Painted on the wall of a garage, the painting depicts a child playing in falling ash emanating from a dumpster fire, perhaps commenting on environmental issues associated with the town’s industrial heritage.
Banksy, Snow (2018). Photo courtesy of the artist.
Port Talbot, located about 7 miles east of Swansea, is home to the largest steel plant in the UK. Black dust, a by-product from the giant local plant, has been known to covers swathes of the town. In July, during a particularly dry spell that exacerbated the problem, many locals complained of respiratory issues as a layer of soot settled on streets, cars, and even pets.