Like elsewhere in the world, Banksys works in the occupied territory have become tourist attractions -- in part due to him often ghosting in to create his works in the dead of night. In 2005, he sprayed nine stencilled images at different locations along the eight-metre-high (27-foot) separation barrier."Love" and "peace" are respectively graffiti-tagged in English and French on the art installations concrete blocks, while three large wrapped presents are at the forefront of the scene.Jerusalem: A manger scene juxtaposed against concrete blocks seemingly pierced by a mortar shell: with Christmas looming, the latest Bethlehem offering by secretive artist Banksy appeared Saturday in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.Dubbed the "Scar of Bethlehem", the baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph are backlit through damaged concrete, chiselled pockmarks exploding out from a gaping hole in four directions to approximate the Christmas Star. "Banksy has his own contribution to Christmas.Built mostly inside the West Bank, Israel says it is necessary to prevent attacks, but Palestinians label it an apartheid wall, separating them from Jerusalem.
Salsaa calls the Israeli wall a "scar" that should induce "shame in anyone who supported" its construction."Banksy is trying to be a voice for those that cannot speak," Salsaa said. Israel began building the separation barrier -- in parts concrete, with other stretches consisting of fencing -- in 2002 during the Palestinian uprising, or intifada. The work is installed at Banksys Walled-Off Hotel, where all rooms overlook a concrete section of the barrier built by Israel to cut off the occupied West Bank from Israeli territory.. They included a ladder on the wall, a little girl carried away by balloons and a window opening onto a peaceful mountain landscape.In 2007, he painted a number of artworks in Bethlehem, including a young girl frisking an Israeli soldier pinned up against a wall. Traditional Bethlehem Christmas festivities will take place next week at the church built on the spot where Christians believe Jesus was born. He "is creating a new model of resistance through art."
Banksy rose to prominence after his subversive artworks started to appear in public spaces in the United Kingdom in the early 2000s, and he has long worked on themes of violence and conflict. "It is a nativity," the hotels manager Wissam Salsaa told AFP after the piece was installed. The manger scene and hotel -- an establishment opened two years ago -- are far from Banksys only West Bank imprint.Palestinian graffiti artists, too, anchor bolts Manufacturers have made the separation wall a place of political and artistic expression. The identity of the worlds best-known graffiti artist remains a mystery and he was not present during the revealing of his latest work.""It is a great way to bring up the story of Bethlehem, the Christmas story, in a different way -- to make people think more" of how Palestinians live in Bethlehem
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