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Banksy draws attention to homelessness in street art Christmas piece


Graffiti artist Banksy has installed a new piece in Birmingham showing two reindeer pulling a bench on which a man is sleeping.

The latest mural from the secretive street artist features two reindeer painted onto a brick wall appearing to pull along a bench on Vyse Street in the city's Jewellery Quarter like Santa's sleigh.

A video posted by Banksy on his Instagram page shows a man with a white beard, apparently homeless, drinking from a bottle before climbing on to the bench to lie down as some passers-by walk past.

In his post, Banksy wrote: "God bless Birmingham.

"In the 20 minutes we filmed Ryan on this bench passers-by gave him a hot drink, two chocolate bars and a lighter - without him ever asking for anything."

The artist's publicist did not immediately respond to a question as to whether the man in the video was a rough sleeper or an actor.

Local jewellery wax carver Martin Clarke, 52, said: "About five o'clock in the morning there was a small tent with a couple of lads in high vis.

"(I) just thought it was to do with the upkeep of the jewellery quarter, and it turned out to be a lot more."

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