Mystery artwork in Birmingham’s Gay Village not Banksy, their spokesman confirms

A mystery piece of artwork that appeared overnight in Birmingham’s Gay Village is not by world-renowned graffiti artist Banksy, it has been confirmed.

The mural, depicting Dorothy from The Wizard Of Oz reaching for a pair of ruby slippers which are hanging from a nearby cable, is said to have appeared overnight on April 3 in Kent Street.

The appearance of the art, on the wall of Sidewalk bar, has drawn speculation that it could have been the latest work of the famous anonymous street artist, with Phil Oldershaw, the bar’s director, telling BirminghamLive he was planning to protect it with Perspex.

He said: “I’m going to protect it whether it’s Banksy or not. It would be a great thing for Birmingham, and it makes Southside look great too.”

On his Instagram page, he said there has been a “media frenzy” ever since the mural was painted.

Banksy artwork
The mural depicts Dorothy from The Wizard Of Oz reaching skywards, towards a pair of ruby slippers which are hanging from a nearby cable (Jacob King/PA)

However, Banksy has not claimed the mural on social media, and in a statement to the PA news agency, a spokesman for the artist said: “This isn’t by the artist Banksy.”

The actual artist behind the Dorothy mural has not yet been revealed.

Banksy’s last confirmed artwork appeared on a building on Hornsey Road in Finsbury Park, London, in March.

New art work unveiled
People gather to look at the Banksy artwork on the side of a building in Finsbury Park, London, in March (Victoria Jones/PA)

Bright green paint was sprayed on the side of the residential building, in front of a cut-back tree, creating the impression of its foliage, with a stencil of a person holding a pressure hose, on March 18.

The mural was defaced with two streaks of white paint just two days after it appeared, with measures now in place to protect it.