Yesterday art fans and dystopian dreamers alike were granted their first view of Banky’s “Bemusement” park, Dismaland. A dark and satirical take on the so-called ‘happiest place on earth’ – Disneyland. As a reported six million people logged on to (re: crashed) the website in the hopes of securing entry, the first images began leaking from inside the walls of the Weston-super-Mare compound.
Thanks to the magic of social media, images have been flooding the #Dismaland feed, giving fans a glimpse behind the crumbling replica castle where a distorted Ariel the Mermaid welcomes guests, grim reapers ride dodgem cars, Cinderella is a car/carriage crash victim and the world’s most miserable security guards and staff are on-hand to guide the park’s gloom-seekers.
Described as a “family theme park unsuitable for children", Banksy’s decision to take over Somerset’s Tropicana harks back from his own childhood. Telling the Weston Mercury, "I loved the Tropicana as a kid, so getting to throw these doors open again is a real honour." He also revealed that the idea came to him after peering through the fence of the dilapidated site, once a popular tourist spot.
At just £3 admission price, Banksy could just about break England’s south west coast. It’s not hard to imagine him peeping from the window of a decaying castle as he sends the British public into art overdrive with his first exhibition since the 2009 show, Banksy v Bristol Museum. #cbf’d with all that? We’ve got an inside look for you here.