Banksy Addresses Domestic Violence in New Valentine’s Day Installation

“Extra meaning to the phrase ‘dump him’”

“The patriarchy is dead.”

Banksy “Valentine’s Day Mascara.” (image courtesy of Banksy’s Instagram)

Such dark witticisms accompany the new installation in Margate attributed to Bristolian Banksy, on the Instagram feed from the mysterious street artist. The Valentine’s Day installation features a caricature of a 1950s western housewife with a bruised eye gazing cheerily at her audience while her husband’s feet protrude from an old refrigerator. A frying pan and a broken chair lie nearby. In this seaside town on the north coast of Kent in south-east England, the news traveled fast yesterday, and many came to look at the new installation before the freezer/fridge was removed by the local council (people think it will be returned).

For all the joking, there were more poignant comments on the artists’ feed that went to the heart of the matter.

Banksy “Valentine’s Day Mascara.” (image courtesy of Banksy’s Instagram)

“I lived that, so, thank you.”

“This is a voice for women who are abused.”

“My father used to beat my mother regularly. Countless black eyes, bruised ribs, concussions. Not to mention the mental pain. Coping with that as a child leaves traces in the past, the present, and the future. Nobody speaks publicly about violence in the family. Well done, Bansky, I bow.”

The artist is known for creating politically charged and socially relevant pieces, using the Banksy platform to draw attention to various causes.

“Thank you for always fighting for the stories that matter!” one commenter sums up a common sentiment.

Banksy “Valentine’s Day Mascara.” (image courtesy of Banksy’s Instagram)

Banksy’s take on domestic violence against women is universal. Millions of women worldwide are physically, verbally, and emotionally attacked in their own homes by their domestic partners. By highlighting this problem on a day to remember love among us, the artist calls on the hypocrisy of men with their conduct toward women.

The World Health Organization says that “globally, about 1 in 3 (30%) of women worldwide have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime.”

If you or someone you know is a victim, or in danger, please look at this:

International List of Sexual & Domestic Violence Agencies. There are many people who care and who are ready to help. Please get in touch with them.