Artist goes viral for painting construction workers outside house

The artist's video has gone viral on TikTok <i>(Image: Tanks)</i>
The artist's video has gone viral on TikTok (Image: Tanks)

An Oxfordshire artist has gone viral on TikTok after painting construction workers outside her house.

A 20-year-old artist from Didcot, who goes by the name Tanks, has been painting construction workers for over a year.

Her TikTok has hundreds of videos of her work including many of construction workers.

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A recent video of a painting of workers putting speed bumps down outside her house has reached over 10 million views.

The post received over 2 million likes and was commented on by thousands.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail, she said: “I was so excited [to see the video go viral].

“I’d never had that much traction to my work before and it was honestly mindblowing that so many people all over the world had seen my little paintings.

“I’ve had a fascination with drawing and painting builders and construction sites for a long time now.

"It started on my art foundation year at Abingdon and Witney College when they were building outside the art block.

“I got in a lot of trouble for drawing them instead of doing the work I’d been set but they caught my eye and I have always loved the work of Van Gogh and Millet’s worker paintings in the fields."

Oxford Mail: One the artworks (Image: Tanks)
Oxford Mail: One the artworks (Image: Tanks)

One the artworks (Image: Tanks) (Image: Tanks)

Many of the highest-liked comments told her she should show the workers.

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One said: “Please show them. Things like that make people’s day. Imagine the smile it’d give them to find out they inspired an artist by working hard at their job”

Another added: “Their company needs to hang these around their corporate buildings! “

Whilst someone else said: “These are so cool! Are you going to show them? I think they’d love it!”

The artist now plans to invite the construction company to a local exhibition to show them the work.

She said: “The goal of this series was to display the working industry within contemporary art as historically those paintings are so important.

“I have had a conversation with some of the workers online and I think it was a big shock to them to see themselves in my work but I hope they enjoy it because they were an amazing inspiration.”


Oxford Mail: The TikTok got over 10 million views
Oxford Mail: The TikTok got over 10 million views

The TikTok got over 10 million views (Image: Tanks)

In one of her videos, she said: "I started painting builders about one year ago. And it was like I saw them as building a new world.

“They have such an important job and think they should be recognised more for what they do.

“Throughout history builders, I know they aren’t builders, but construction workers they do all these dangerous jobs and I think it needs to be represented in the artworld.”

The exhibition will take place at the Northbourne community centre, on church street in Didcot is from July 7 and 9.