Britain’s most famous graffiti artist has just unveiled a pop-up exhibition entitled ‘Dismaland’ at a derelict lido in seaside resort Weston-super-Mare, near Bristol.
Curious goings on, including the construction of a pink castle, a lorry bent into an s-shape and a metal horse sculpture plus the sighting of Ms Holly Cushing – reported to be Banksy’s manager – all fuelled rumours that the elusive graffiti artist was planning something at the site. The area had been supposedly closed off because film-makers were using the area for a new Hollywood thriller.
Described by its creators as ‘a festival of art, amusements and entry-level anarchism’, Dismaland opens this Saturday (22 August) and will go on for five weeks, admitting visitors from 11am until 11pm. Tickets go on sale this Friday 21 August and can be pre-booked and purchased online at www.dismaland.co.uk or bought from the cabin on the grass opposite the park (although there are a limited number available for immediate entry, some will be subject to queuing). The exhibition promises ‘the finest collection of contemporary art ever assembled in a North Somerset seaside town’ and a quick scan down the lengthy list of other artists involved include some big names from the art world, like Damien Hirst.
The ‘Bemusement Park’ as it has been called on the website, is a sinister twist on Walt Disney’s Disneyland and the entire park appears to embrace the darker themes. A first glimpse at the map reveals a stallion constructed entirely of used scaffolding poles, an opportunity for visitors to ceremoniously burn local author, Jeffrey Archer novels in a firepit and a riot control vehicle equipped with sniper posts, grenade launchers and a children’s slide. There are also three large galleries on site too. A series of night events every Friday throughout the exhibition are set to include pioneering, Bristol-grown band, Massive Attack, a comedy night, DJ Yoda and lots more. There’ll also be DJs playing late into the night each Saturday during Dismaland’s running time.