New Banksy art unveiled at hospital to thank doctors, nurses

LONDON (AP) — A new work by the elusive street artist Banksy, honouring health workers, has been unveiled at a British hospital.

The framed picture, titled Game Changer, depicts a young boy sitting on the floor playing with a nurse superhero toy. Batman and Spiderman action figure toys lie in a wastepaper basket next to the boy.

The nurse figure, complete with a cape and a face mask, wears an apron featuring a red cross — the only spot of colour in the black-and-white work. The piece has been placed on display in a corridor at Southampton General Hospital in southern England on Wednesday. The artist left a note for hospital workers, saying, “Thanks for all you’re doing. I hope this brightens the place up a bit, even if (it’s) only black and white.”

Health officials said it was a “massive boost to morale” for everyone at the hospital, which has seen at least two members of staff die after contracting the new coronavirus. “It will be really valued by everyone in the hospital as people get a moment in their busy lives to pause, reflect and appreciate this piece of art,” said Chief Executive of University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust Paula Head.

The artwork will be auctioned later to raise money for national health charities, a spokeswoman for Banksy said.

A member of staff has their photograph taken in front of the new artwork painted by Banksy during lockdown, entitled ‘Game Changer’, which has gone on display to staff and patients on Level C of Southampton General Hospital in Southampton, England. PHOTO: AP