October 28, 2013

Banksy graffitis protest against the NYT for rejecting his op-ed mocking the new World Trade Center tower.

I got to his website from the NY Post, via Drudge, which takes at face value the statement "Today’s piece was going to be an op-ed column in the New York Times. But they declined to publish what I supplied. Which was this..."

Banksy's post says it was to be an op-ed, but it's not in the format of an op-ed. It's presented in the form of a front-page news story about the artist's opinion, not a column written by the artist, so I take it the mock-up of the NYT is just another artwork, a viral promo pointing to his graffiti (a photograph of which you can see at the first link, above).

But let's read the text anyway. Part of me resists artists who elbow me for attention, but that's not the part of me writing this blog post. We might ask: If this is in fact a rejected op-ed, why was it rejected? Well, obviously, it says "you've got to do something about the new World Trade Center," and that's too close to saying: Knock this one down too. It continues: "That building is a disaster," and how can you not think he's trying to do edgy comedy calling up memories of the disaster of September 11, 2001? The next line makes that obvious: "Well no, disasters are interesting."

Yeah, Artist Boy? Well, take your interestingness and go to hell.

That's my reaction after reading 2 paragraphs. But then I read on, and guess what? Artist Boy, self-professed lover of interestingness, goes on to natter out criticisms of the building that have all been aired extensively in the media as the reconstruction of the site has been debated over the years. Is Banksy familiar with any of that, or did he just wander over to America to start talking off the top of his head as if any of his thoughts are probably interesting?

I know. There seems to be a paradox: Why am I blogging about this if I don't find it interesting? It can't be interesting to say something is not interesting, can it? Yes, I'd say it is, if people are already acting as if it is interesting.


Anonymous said...

Back to Britain, and take a good many media figures with you.

Carl Pham said...

They didn't publish it because it's boring and unoriginal, and attempts to attract attention merely by being mildly offensive. Good call by the editor.

Tank said...

1. AA's right. Water under the bridge years ago.

2. Everyone I've talked to about it (I live 30 minutes away) thinks the building looks pretty cool.

Tank said...

1. AA's right. Water under the bridge years ago.

2. Everyone I've talked to about it (I live 30 minutes away) thinks the building looks pretty cool.

Larry J said...

He is free to have and state his opinion. That doesn't mean the New York Times is obligated to print it. Frankly, I've never heard of him and his opinion doesn't mean anything to me.

Alex said...

Still after all these years, I just can't get arsed about New York City.

Molly said...


Graffiti is plural and therefore doesn't need an "s" at the end.

The singular is graffito.

Like Mafioso and Mafiosi

Anonymous said...

Are there any other trends in vandal opinion that we need to be brought up to speed on?

Anonymous said...

Phil Ochs said, "In ugly times like these, true protest is beauty"

Then he killed himself

Go thou and do likewise ya poser

Unknown said...

Banksy = graffiti artist
graffiti artist = criminal
graffiti art = oxymoron

Skyler said...

We have to be honest and admit that the original world trade center towers were embarrassingly ugly and boring too.