“Apple is the world’s most profitable company, it pays over $7 billion (around 6 billion euros) a year in taxes - and it only exists because they allowed in a young man from Homs,” Banksy said in a rare statement on Saturday.
Eager to pierce the myth according to which migrants bleed the system dry, Britain's celebrated artist created a trio of paintings at the Calais jungle in northern France, to show that migrants can actually bring profit.
To do that, he concentrated his brush on one of the world's most famous billionaire immigrants: the late founder of Apple Steve Jobs.
His timely new artwork features Jobs’ trademark spectacles, as he carries an early Apple computer in one hand a sack of belongings on his back.
“We’re often led to believe migration is a drain on the country’s resources, but Steve Jobs was the son of a Syrian migrant," Banksy explained to some of the 4,500 people cramming the camp.
Few of them--mostly from war-torn Syria--knew who Banksy or Jobs were but the artist explained he had depicted the latter in his trademark black polo to underline the late computing king's connection with the country.
While in Calais, Banksy also painted images following the migrant theme on other walls, including a riff on “Raft of the Medusa” by Theodore Gericault with its luxury yacht.
Under the Gericault pastiche read the slogan: "we're not all in the same boat."
A Banksy work can often fetch hundreds of millions of euros from ardent collectors.