Saturday, June 22, 2024

Walled Off Hotel

The Walled Off Hotel is a boutique hotel designed by anonymous artist Banksy alongside other creatives and notable academic Dr. David Grindon.

Established in March 2017, and initially set out to only be a temporary exhibition, the hotel has since attracted nearly 140,000 visitors, in part because of its location opposite the Israeli West Bank Barrier. Banky’s artwork can be seen all over the inside of the hotel as well as outside on the wall.

While the reaction to the hotel as a work of art and social intervention has been mixed, especially given its location and subject matter. Critics have argued that such a building profits of tragedy, and is a case of war tourism. Evidence has suggested that the hotel has brought more tourism to areas of the West Bank, in turn raising awareness of the realities of those affected by the conflict.

The hotel is considered to be a key piece of social commentary on the conditions of those affected by the Israeli-Palestine Conflict and the historical impacts of territorial colonialism within the region.

I had heard about the hotel before the trip and as a long time Banksy fan wanted to check it out. After our group did a tour of the wall art we stopped in at the hotel and it was a fantastic experience with so much artwork inside. This stop actually was probably the highlight of my entire trip and I am still always in search of Banksy artwork all over the world as he continues to highlight social injustice issues.

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Amy Harris
Amy Harris is a writer and photographer who has been traveling for 20 years and flown over 2 million miles to visit over 80 countries on 6 continents. She is a freelance photographer for Invision by Associated Press, AP Images and Rex/Shutterstock. Her work can be seen in various publications and websites including: Rolling Stone, AP Images, National Geographic Books, Fodor’s Travel Guides, Forbes.com, Lonely Planet Travel Guides, JetStar magazine, and Delta Sky Magazine.

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