Banksy Offers Take on Disneyland With 'Dismaland'

Banksy Offers Take on Disneyland With 'Dismaland'

Banksy’s version of Disneyland isn’t exactly the happiest place on Earth.  The famed artist has been secretly assembling a dystopian version and a sinister twist of the theme park titled Dismaland, which will remain open for the next five weeks in the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, U.K. 

The artist’s biggest project to date had been shrouded in secrecy. Local residents and curious tourists were led to believe that the installations being built in a disused former lido called Tropicana were part of a film set for a Hollywood crime thriller called Grey Fox.

 

Grey-Fox-Disney

In the statement on the council’s website Banksy said, “I loved the Tropicana as a kid, so getting to throw these doors open again is a real honour.”

Visitors can have a souvenir photo taken in Cinderella's Castle against a backdrop of a dead princess in a coach crash surrounded by paparazzi, while surly stewards carry bunches of balloons labelled "I'm an imbecile".

 

In one fairground game, visitors can steer miniature boats full of asylum seekers around a pond.

Dismaland also  includes a contemporary art gallery; a “gothic sculpture park” housed in a tent; a bonfire where books by the much-maligned novelist Jeffrey Archer, a local lord, will be incinerated daily; and an “oil caliphate themed” mini-golf course. Artists whose work is showing include Damien Hirst, Jenny Holzer and David Shrigley. A number of musicians, including Kate Tempest and members of Pussy Riot, will perform concerts during Dismaland’s five-week run.

Described as a “festival of art,” the exhibition will open on Saturday and run until September 27, from 11am until 11pm.  Visitors will take in the exhibition’s main attraction, a Disney-style castle, surrounded by palm trees, a carousel and other amusements for a £3 entry fee.

-Devashree Goenka