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Dublin: 3 °C Tuesday 21 May, 2019

The Stormzy mural in Smithfield has been painted over after council objections

Dublin City Council said the artwork did not have planning permission so had to be removed.

Grey Wall_2 Source: Stephen Rogers

THE STORMZY MURAL in Smithfield has been removed.

Dublin City Council confirmed that because no planning permission for the mural was sought, and the lack of an application for its retention, it could not remain.

An ironic plaque now erected at the site dubs the “Grey Wall” a “standout piece in Dublin City Council’s continuing series on the transience and meaninglessness of art”.

It goes on: “The drab, lifeless scene drains the colour from its surroundings, giving a stark warning about the threat of bureaucracy to imagination.”

Grey Wall_1 Source: Stephen Rogers

Artist collective group Subset painted the mural of London rapper Stormzy on 27 March in anticipation for his concert in the Olympia Theatre two days later.

Dublin City Council has contacted Subset and informed the group that the mural must be removed by 15 December as it did not have planning permission.

A spokesperson for Subset told that it didn’t apply for planning permission because it couldn’t afford the cost.

“We’re a startup. We have very little money and in order for us to apply for planning permission… it would have been very costly and time-consuming,” the spokesperson said.

In a statement to today, Dublin City Council said: “Dublin City Council planners and arts and culture officials have supported numerous public art installations in the past and are always happy to engage with artistic groups in relation to any proposed art installation.

Applicants, for their part, must however be cognisant of the regulatory framework within which Dublin City Council is obliged to operate.
Planning permission is normally required for the painting of a mural, unless in certain specific circumstances where it is carried out as part of a public art initiative in partnership with Dublin City Council’s Arts Office.
No official application was made for the installation of the Stormzy mural in Smithfield and subsequently no application for retention was made.

Subset had been granted four weeks to move the mural last month.

Read: Stormzy mural gets makeover in protest against council removal threats

Read: The Herald has apologised after mistaking Stormzy for Romelu Lukaku on its back page

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Sean Murray

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