Banksy's graffiti in Ukraine. My visit to Borodyanka. Part #1

in #streetart7 months ago (edited)

Banksy in Ukraine.png

I am often ashamed of my weakness. Ashamed in front of those who went through this apocalypse and survived, who lost loved ones, lost their home. But did not give up and continues to live.

They could make it, and I can too. So let's go on.

Initially, the idea was to capture all graffiti authored by Banksy, an England-based street artist and political activist. He secretly visited Ukraine in Nov 2022.

I made my trip on Feb 25`2023. It was Saturday, a day off, so my husband and I visited all these small towns as they are very close to Kyiv. All these photos were captured on that day.


The first point was in Hostomel. I shared it in my post Banksy's graffiti in Ukraine. My visit to Hostomel. Today it's about Borodyanka.

To give you a vision, a year ago on February 26, the offensive of Russian troops on Kyiv direction from the north was stopped here. An imaginary line along the Borodyanka - Bucha road.

This small town impressed me so much that for a couple of days, I hallucinated the burnt roofs of the houses here or there. It was completely unlike anything I had seen before. When I saw damaged houses here, then somewhere in another block maye, or in the other end of the city. It was different here. I was driving down the main street, and on both sides big empty black eyes from window openings stared at me.

We dropped the car near this Police Station.



And this is local Employment Center.


The difference between these cities and Kyiv is that in Kyiv very quickly began to restore the houses destroyed by shelling. They immediately began paving the streets. And here... almost everything remained as it was on those days.


There are traces of shrapnel on the asphalt.


Fresh flowers near the obelisk dedicated to the defenders


A plate with the inscription - DTEK. We return the power (or the light, meaning electricity). It is the largest private investor in the energy industry of Ukraine. They had harsh times this winter, when Russian troops constantly fired at our energy facilities.


Restoration work is ongoing on some facilities. I have no idea how this can be restored though.


Most of damaged buildings stand as is.



The inscription in Russian: Stop! Mines!
This is the gate of the operator of telecommunication services. Once he was the only one in the country. I even once worked for them.


There is a small market on both sides of the street. Today is Saturday, market day. They sell everything, dairy products, eggs, sausages, clothes, building materials, seeds. Spring is coming.


Next to this.


In the morning, the sun shone kindly, but when we drove into Borodyanka, the wind picked up, the sky became gray and gloomy. It seemed that it would rain soon.


The houses seemed dead. Only the remnants of the curtains fluttered from the wind.


You've probably seen this house on the news. This is how it looked in March-April. The arch from the survived upper floors was later dismantled, or maybe it simply collapsed down.

And this is how it looks after a year. Gosh, there is soo much work to do here...

The inscription on the large banner - Get the RF out of the UN!


I guessed that the first Banksy was most likely somewhere here. Because he chose for his graffiti houses that were badly damaged.

In fact, it is already visible in this photo (try to find it!. But then I didn't notice it. We decided to first find the second one that was further along this street.

In the description I found on Internet there were addresses with house numbers. But it's better to navigate here using online maps, since there are few number plates left.





Now that I've been there, I often recognize Borodyanka in war reports. Journalists are regular guests here, I think. They are here because this is their job. Or their excuse. But why am I here?


I probably had to live through this trauma, this grief. In order not to carry these black demons in my heart.

I understood why our leadership always brings foreign guests - presidents, ministers - here and in neighboring similar towns. I used to think it was a bit unethical. And now I understand. It doesn't matter which video you watched and from where, or how many. It is impossible to feel from watching a video what you feel when you are here, walking among these houses.

And this is a bust of Taras Shevchenko. Monuments to him can be seen all over the world. Earlier, Ukrainians considered him literally the father of the nation and a prophet. Now we see that he really saw the future.


He stands in the square opposite this wounded house, sadly bowing his head shot by rashists. I think this bust should be kept in a museum.





These are all different houses. There are so many of them. Too many.💔



Cats. Was this pile of trash and rusted iron their home a year ago?






The multi-storey building on the right once was one whole. Now the middle entrance is completely destroyed.



Inscription "Food store".



Here we go. I found it!

Looks like someone learned their lesson. A glass cube was built around the fragment of the wall with graffiti. It has a door and it is open. Security alarm was installed inside. Fine. I hope this one will not be stolen.

I just read that the local authorities plan to transfer it to a museum.


Banksy depicted a man who is thrown to the floor by a boy. Both are in the uniform of judokas.

There may be several interpretations of this work. But we saw in the image of a man exactly Putin, who, by the way, is fond of judo.




Well, looks like if I continue this post will be too long. People don't usually like longreads. So I better stop. Let's continue next time. Soon.🙂

Thanks a lot for your time and attention 💙💛

Stay tuned



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The immediate feelings of sadness at this illegal invasion of Ukraine is the unnecessary deaths of innocent civilians, then, whenever the time comes the rebuilding of the infrastructure and houses. That is the sadness of the long term effects.

The problem with 24hr news and journalists is the need for sensationalism in what they report. We do not need that bullshit. (nor the "look at me I am in a war zone bringing it to you, how brave am I" attitudes and personas).... before they jump in their cars and head for the border and safety.

Your story from the start has brought honesty to the situation,from someone living this hell on earth 24/7: telling and showing it like it is. Thank you.

Slava Ukraini

The problem with 24hr news and journalists is the need for sensationalism in what they report

I have the same feeling for a long time already. I mean our project "United News" marathon. First, you notice that they repeat the same info all day, and this can't be called "news", right? Then, when they dodn't have enough info to fill the ether they flood it with bullshit. But I realised recently a good side of this 24/7 marathon. It doesn't let some of us forget about what's happening and stand aside. Like it was during 8 years since the first invasion in 2014. There were volunteers and people who constantly helped, but a lot of people lived like there is no warware on the east of Ukraine, sometimes in 200 km from you. You know, sometimes I feel like everything around is wrong...

have to agree, there are few in the western world that realise this has been going on in Eastern Ukraine since 2014. No one was even concerned with Crimea, that came and went.

sad but true

Yeap. Sad but true

It is heartbreaking to see this destruction that has killed so many and shattered the lives of others. We need the media to show this too. People will demonise them, but they are not the ones sending the bombs and missiles. One man could stop all this, but he chooses to continue whilst young men of his country die too. It makes me so angry.

I have no idea who Banksy really is, but he does like to show up injustice and hypocrisy.

I completely agree.
I ask myself - why do ordinary Russians go to war? Having come here, they see what is really happening. They see that they are actually aggressors and murderers. There are many testimonial videos. But new ones keep coming. Propaganda is a really scary thing

Normal people don't want to fight, but they may be forced to by their leaders who stay away from the action. I hope they can be made to see sense.

Yeap. It is difficult to resist the regime when things are getting pretty desperate...

Прекрасна роповідь про страшні речі. 💪

Що Ви там робили - правильне питання. Думаю, Ваша відповідь на нього не повна.

Що Ви там робили - правильне питання. Думаю, Ваша відповідь на нього не повна.

Напевно. Є ідеї?

Ідеї є, але вони з мого трактування і Вам ніяк не підійдуть. Відповідь можете знайти тільки Ви.

Мені також важливо, як це сприймають інші

Думаю, це уже пів відповіді :)

Тоді добре )

Absolutely heartbreaking scenes and as you said, it must be even so much worse and emotional seeing them in reality... It make take decades before some parts of your country get restored :( I´m so sorry. But it´s really important that you keep showing the world what has happened there. People tend to forget quickly and easily...

People tend to forget quickly and easily...

Such is the nature and mechanism of survival 😒 Anyway, I just show what my life is. I'd like to travel, see beautiful cities and the seaside, I miss this so much. But this can wait. At least I guess so at the moment.

Yeah, I know. In my comment, I didn´t actually mean your people but rather the rest of the world. Media in some countries might not be covering it as much as they were at the beginning of the war. But in fact, the war is still there and your peoplestill live in this nightmare every day. That´s why it´s important to remind the world what has happened and what is still happening in Ukraine. Thank you for your reports. Hugs and greetings from the Czech Republic.

I really appreciate your support and understanding 🤗❤


Unfortunately, in the UK we have idiots in power and that's being polite. I felt sorry for you when our (then) Prime Minister, Boris Johnson visited Ukraine. Thankfully, he's been ousted but things aren't much better. I doubt the intentions of the big players.

Bang, I did it again... I just rehived your post!
Week 146 of my contest just can now check the winners of the previous week!

It is sad how some bad leaders think violence is fun , This is heartbreaking..

I cannot call this "fun".

Fun? Did you even open the post?

We tend to forget... but not our priest. Ukraine is in the daily intentions of my parish church.

Everything fades with time. God bless your priest and all of you! ❤️


That street art is very impressive. Stay safe

Thank you

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it is heartbreaking to see such things.. i am sorry