British street artist Banksy ripped apart the design of the new World Trade Center building during his recent visit to New York City, calling it a “betrayal of everyone who lost their lives on September 11th."
The “anonymous” graffiti artist complained Sunday that the New York Times refused to publish his op-ed on criticizing One World Trade Center, formerly known as the Freedom Tower.
Unhappy with the rejection, he painted a jab at the Times on a wall in north Brooklyn’s hipster-haven Greenpoint, reading “This site contains blocked messages." Then he published the editorial on his website as it would have looked in the Times.
“The biggest eyesore in New York is not graffiti, argues Banksy, it’s under contstruction at ground zero,” reads the title.
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The artist from Bristol claimed “the attacks of September 11th were an attack on all of us … it’s how we respond to adversity that defines us.”
He called the building “104 floors of compromise” which “lacks any self-confidence.”
“That building is a disaster,” he wrote, “Well no, disasters are interesting. One World Trade Center is a non-event. It’s vanilla. It looks like something they would build in Canada.”
“How does it stand up without a spine?” he asked. “It looks like it never wanted to be built in the first place.”
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“It’s the first time I’ve ever seen a shy sky-scraper,” he added.
“It would be easy to view One World Trade Centre [sic] as a betrayal of everyone who lost their lives on September 11th, because it so clearly clearly proclaims the terrorists won.”
He said no one comes to New York City to experience “well-mannered common sense,” but for “spirit and audacity. Of which One World Trade has none.”
He said the building “declares the glory days of New York are gone … Because you currently have under construction a one thousand foot tall sign that read – New York – we lost our nerve."
The article was accompanied with a shadow image of the new building, overwritten with the words “Replace with better artwork.”