Banksy to take up month-long residency on streets of Doha
DOHA: Elusive street artist Banksy is set to add some of his unmistakable graffiti work to the walls of Doha later this year when he takes up a month-long residency in the Qatari capital.
The announcement was made as the Brit – whose identity remains unknown – completes a month’s stint in New York, during which he has been putting up a new piece of street art every day.
“Banksy has been generating a great deal of buzz around his US residency, and we’re hoping he can bring some of that to Qatar, while also helping establish a platform for emerging local graffiti artists,” said the Qatari Culture and Heritage Commission in a statement.
And the move appears to have gone down well among Doha residents.
“I just can’t wait to see what he’ll come up with,” said Abdulla Ramzi, 32. “Perhaps he could do something satirical about the traffic, or our love of world records!”
“I’d love to see one of his trademark rats on the Corniche, but perhaps in gold,” said Helen Pate. 25.
According to the Commission, Banksy will be supported across the city with the setting up of a series of special areas called ‘#StreetArtQCHC Walls’.
“Should inspiration strike at one of these hotspots, Banksy can simply call a representative from the local cultural authority to get permission for the new piece, have that approved by a series of officials in the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, then travel in a special convoy of trucks to the designated area where the piece’s development will be accompanied by an evening of canapés and a performance by a prominent popular music star from the US or European DJ,” said the statement.
But sources warned that while Banksy would be “welcome to use the city as a canvas”, he might like to avoid his usual themes.
“Let’s just hope he doesn’t do anything too political or subversive, you know, like something on migrant workers,” said a cultural insider. “Because that would be totally unacceptable and he’d have to leave immediately.”