Banksy's Brexit Mural Disappears

Banksy's famous 2017 mural in Dover, which was a commentary on the UK's forthcoming exit from the EU, has disappeared without explanation.

@banksy via Instagram
@banksy via Instagram

The mural depicting a worker chopping off one of the twelve stars of a giant EU flag appeared in the British port city of Dover in May 2017. Located strategically near the ferry terminal in the city that looks out over the European continent, it has become a symbol for the fate the UK faces in October this year. 

The abandoned building where Banksy painted his Brexit work is owned by a family who had previously been in court with the artist. 

The scaffolding in front of Banksys Brexit works in Dover. Photo: David Joseph Wright
The scaffolding in front of Banksys Brexit works in Dover. Photo: David Joseph Wright

A scaffolding was erected in front of the mural on Saturday, August 24, and the following morning only a large white box appeared behind the scaffolding. So far, Banksy has not commented on the disappearance and the city's representatives also do not say what happened. 

The Godden family owns the Godden Gaming Organization, a property empire that owns properties in Folkestone, Thanet and Dove. When Banksy painted his work, the building was deserted and the plan was for it to be demolished. 

This is not the first time the Godden family has dealt with Banksy. They have previously been in court in an attempt to get permission to sell one of his murals made on one of their properties in Folkestone. When that work, Art Buff, first appeared, the family told the press that they intended to remove it or sell it for £1 million and that the profits would go to local charities. They shipped it to Art Miami, however, the court ruled that it should be returned and prevented the sale.

Was it the irony or chance that Banksy's Brexit work was painted on yet another of the Godden family's real estate? Since the "disappearance" of the painting, several questions and speculations have flourished on social media. Was it an accident or a well-planned joke by the artist who has a reputation for creating publicity stunts? Or could it be some kind of revenge on the part of Goddens? 

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