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Open for Business: The Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill

The guerilla street artist Banksy has just unveiled a new exhibit in New York City’s Greenwich Village. Featuring self-dipping chicken nuggets and other animatronic oddities, this is an artist’s take on cultural and utilitarian attitudes towards animals-on the farm and in the home. A sign posted outside the shop proclaims, “Open for Pet Supplies/Rare Breeds/Mechanically retrieved meat.” In a statement distributed by his publicist, the secretive artist stated, “I wanted to make art that questioned our relationship with animals and the ethics and sustainability of factory farming, but it ended up as chicken nuggets singing.” Banksy brings up an issue that is often uncomfortable and rarely addressed in polite conversation. Should the animals we eat be afforded the same regard as the ones we depend on for companionship? A depressed Tweety bird brings to mind the current debate over California’s Proposition 2 and the controversy of confining farm animals to cages that prohibit natural movement. The exhibit will run until October 31 and is free and open to the public.

Read a New York Times article on the provocative exhibit or click here to view a slideshow.

Image courtesy of http://flickr.com/photos/sabeth718/sets/72157607890649410/

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