It Looks Like Bansky Has Struck the Wall of England’s Reading Prison, Which Once Detained Oscar Wilde, in His Latest Mural Favorite 



Mar 1 2021



"It appears that Banksy has struck again, this time painting the brick wall of the former Reading Prison in Berkshire, England, where Oscar Wilde was jailed for two years over his “indecent” affair with Lord Alfred Douglas.

In the new mural, a prisoner in striped garb is seen mid-escape, dangling from a rope made of knotted sheets as he repels down the wall with a typewriter. Although the anonymous street artist has yet to claim the work as his own (which he does only on Instagram or his official website), curator Vince John told the BBC, “It appears to be a new Banksy at Reading jail, or should I say ‘gaol,'” as the prison was formerly known. “I believe the piece is in reference to Oscar Wilde.”
The new mural could help spur a campaign to transform the site, which has sat empty since its closure in 2014, into an arts complex, a move that has support from Dame Judi Dench and Sir Kenneth Branagh."-Caroline Goldstein

"The prison was put up for sale in 2019 and, after a deal fell through, the council was given more time to find investment for the project.

Artistic director of Reading’s Rabble Theater, Toby Davies, was thrilled at the prospect that the street artist had used the prison as his canvas. “In the right hands, this gaol will evolve Reading into an internationally recognized historical and cultural destination,” he told the BBC. “Dare I say it, it looks like Banksy agrees.”"Caroline Goldstein

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