October 16, 2013

Sirens of the Lambs: Mysterious British street artist Banksy, infiltrating New York with "Better Out Than In," on Friday introduced "Sirens of the Lambs."

It's art in motion. A slaughterhouse delivery truck is filled with plush animal toys, squeaking through the slatted boards of the truck. This display on wheels will be "touring the meatpacking district and then citywide for the next two weeks," according to the Banksy website.

The "Sirens" video was pushing toward 3-million views on YouTube as of Monday morning.

It has a Muppets feel. According to the website, four puppeteers dressed in black Lycra are inside the truck, moving the toys, whose heads turn and mouths open and close. These are "60 cuddly soft toys on the road to swift death," the site says — media have billed them as farmyard animals, although I spotted an oddball panda or two making the trip to the slaughterhouse.

Audio on the site says this is either a statement on the "casual cruelty" of the meat industry or "something vague and pretentious" about losing childhood innocence. In keeping with that theme, the video ends with a displeased child sobbing in a stroller.

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