Artist of vandalized mural seeks to turn damages into something positive

Artist of vandalized mural seeks to turn damages into something positive

KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – One “Black Lives Matter” mural more than 75 people worked on over Labor Day weekend at Briarcliff Parkway and North Mulberry Drive was recently defaced. Tire tracks and white paint can be seen over the mural artist spent hours working on.

KCTV5 News talked with Harold Smith, the teacher and artist that came up with the mural’s design. He says never mind the people that did this, instead let’s use it as an opportunity to bring even more beauty and positivity to this area.

Rather than trying to erase it, Smith actually wants to include the paint splatter and tire tracks in the updated version of the mural. He says they’ll hold meetings to figure out how to incorporate the negativity into the mural.

“I wouldn’t erase it because the damage shows why the message is important. You know what I’m saying, if you think somebody’s life matters and that person is an artist, you’re not going to deface their work,” Smith said. “Incorporate it into the art. Let it become a part of it, let it become a new mural.”

There are multiple street cameras in the area of the mural and Kansas City police say they’ll investigate it if the city files a report. So far, that hasn’t happened and even if it does, prosecutors say it might be tough because not only do you have to identify who did it, you have to prove they did it with intent to deface a monument. Then it could be argued whether it’s a monument at all since it’s a street hundreds of cars drive over every day.

Charges or no charges, the one thing that can’t be argued is the spirit in which the artists intended one of unity and love.