Banksy shared a proposal to replace the Edward Colston statue protestors brought down in Bristol.

Daria Simone Harper
Jun 9, 2020 5:03PM, via The Independent

Black Lives Matter protesters rolling a statue of British slave trader Edward Colston. Photo by Giulia Spadafora/NurPhoto via Getty Images.

Elusive street artist Banksy shared a proposal for what should replace a statue of Edward Colston that was removed by U.K. Black Lives Matter protesters over the weekend. On June 7th, protesters in Bristol brought down the longstanding statue of Colston—a 17th-century slave trader, responsible for the transport of more than 80,000 enslaved individuals between 1672 and 1689—from its base in the city center and rolled it into the nearby harbor. Banksy, a Bristol-native, took to his Instagram to ask the question: “What should we do with the empty plinth in the middle of Bristol?”

He continued with his suggestion on what should happen next, saying:

Here’s an idea that caters for both those who miss the Colston statue and those who don’t. We drag him out the water, put him back on the plinth, tie cable round his neck and commission some life size bronze statues of protestors in the act of pulling him down. Everyone happy. A famous day commemorated.

The response to the artist’s proposition has been mostly positive, with the post garnering more than 1 million likes as of this writing. The removal of the statue was sparked by protests for George Floyd, an unarmed Black man who was killed in Minneapolis Police Department custody on May 25th. Banksy also recently released a new painting inspired by the death of George Floyd; he shared a statement along with that work addressing what he called a “faulty system.”

Daria Simone Harper