Our Lives “Who Needs Banksy?” 22 July 2022: Friday on BBC One

Our Lives "Who Needs Banksy?" 22 July 2022: Friday on BBC One 11

When a mural by the world’s best known street artist, Banksy, appeared overnight in Port Talbot, it caused a sensation – but also a problem. Despite a local campaign, Seasons Greetings was sold to an art dealer and removed from the town. But the legacy of Banksy is now to be seen everywhere across the steel town, with an explosion of street art and murals inspired by the Banksy.

Local people have been encouraged to take up the spray cans, including steelworker Ryan Davies, who has a water tower at the steel plant as his canvas. Artists have been commissioned to come to the town and create new works honouring local heroes like Michael Sheen and Richard Burton, and first time artist Tassia Haines is creating a seven-metre pink dragon on a gable end – despite having stage-four breast cancer.

Port Talbot is not short of walls to draw on. The underpasses become a space to tell the history of the town, including the story of the Jamaican community. And on the site of the original Banksy, a new mural has appeared, drawing attention to air pollution in an ironic homage to the Banksy original.

Six months after the Banksy left Port Talbot, the town has become the street art capital of Wales.

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