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Dublin: 7°C Tuesday 25 January 2022

'Blatant disrespect': David Attenborough mural vandalised with 'climate hoax' graffiti

Dublin City Council ordered the removal of the mural early this year.

Image: SUBSET/Twitter

A MURAL OF David Attenborough on the side of a property in south Dublin has been vandalised with climate change denial graffiti.

The climate change awareness mural of the British naturalist on Longwood Avenue in Portobello has been the subject of a planning dispute since September.

Dublin City Council ordered its removal after alleging that it was painted without planning permission and may be subject to an enforcement order under the Planning and Development Acts.

The mural was recently scrawled with huge writing that reads: “climate hoax”. 

Tweet by @Ronan Lyons Source: Ronan Lyons/Twitter

Green Party councillor Claire Byrne, who represents the area where the mural is located and sits on the council’s Arts, Culture and Recreation committee, said the vandalism was “blatant disrespect, especially when we’re in the fight to keep the street art on the wall”. 

Byrne said there is a real graffiti tagging problem in the Portobello area and credits the Attenborough mural with helping combat it. 

Byrne added that she is seeking additional funding to trial anti-graffiti paint in Portobello next year.

This is the second mural by artist collective SUBSET to have fallen foul of the council’s planning department. 

In August, a case involving the group’s ‘Horseboy’ mural in Smithfield was referred to An Bord Pleanála after the council ruled that it needed planning permission to remain on a property on Church Street.

Other artworks by SUBSET have previously been the subject of enforcement orders by Dublin City Council, notably the Stormzy mural in late 2017.

On that occasion, the group launched a visual protest and criticised the council for their decision at the time.

It claimed that the move contradicted the local authority’s cultural strategy, in particular its aim to support opportunities for citizens to engage in inclusive and diverse cultural experiences.

Dublin City Council has been contacted for comment. 

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Adam Daly

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