Artist behind Banksy-style ‘strung along lover’ graffiti revealed

Mystery has surrounded the black stencilled silhouette of a woman smoking ever since it appeared in Southgate Road on February 25.

One reader got in touch with Hackney Gazette believing they could see Banksy’s signature style in the piece, but the artist’s office denied it was his.

It now appears that another faceless graffitist, known as DNZ, is behind the street art.

Hackney Gazette: The street art appeared next to a red phone box last monthThe street art appeared next to a red phone box last month (Image: Chris Radway)

A video posted to his Instagram page shows the artist, who is hooded and dressed in black, using spray paint to stencil the black silhouette onto a white brick wall.

He then appears to use a black marker ben to draw a phone line connecting to a Grade-II listed red phone box at the junction with Northchurch Road.

The final image shows a woman who appears to have stepped out of the phone box for a cigarette, holding the receiver in her left hand and a cigarette holder in her right.

According to the Instagram video caption, ‘Strung along lover’ is the name of the piece.

Intriguingly, this creation appears to not be the first by DNZ in north London over the last few months.

Six weeks ago, he posted another video showing him spray-painting close to Belsize Park Tube station.

The final image shows a child in a gas mask, with ‘World War Free’ written in big red letters above.

The artist also appears to have written the same words on a painted-over mural in Old Street, Shoreditch, just three days ago.

The original mural on the wall of a TfL-owned building showed two small girls side-by-side, one in a hijab holding an Israeli flag and a teddy bear, and another in dungarees with a Palestinian flag.

Hackney Gazette: The original mural was vandalised and then painted overThe original mural was vandalised and then painted over (Image: Circle of Toys)

On the morning of February 27, the mural was defaced with graffiti reading: “Palestinian children killed since 07.09.23 – 11, 500. Funded by your taxes. Murder is murder.”

While the date is wrong, the words referenced the number of children killed in the Gaza strip since October 7 last year.

Last week, TfL claimed it decided to paint over the defaced mural “in a considerate way” to avoid encouraging anti-social behaviour.

Whether the latest addition to the mural by DNZ will be the last remains to be seen.

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