The infamous street artist Banksy owes a thank you to a window cleaner from Hull who rescued his new mural from the destruction of vandals.
The image depicts a young boy wielding a pencil that looks like a sword accompanied by the words “Draw the raised bridge!” and was painted just last week on a permanently raised bridge, The Guardian reports.
After Banksy confirmed via Instagram that the artwork was his, large crowds flocked to see it.
Unfortunately, within the first 48 hours of its existence, vandals had completely covered the stencil in white paint, which sparked outrage online.
“I am absolutely livid with Hull city council for not protecting the Banksy mural. City of Culture, pfffft,” said one angry Banksy fan of the defacing of his art.
On Sunday, a local window cleaner named Jason Fanthorpe and a few residents decided to save the mural themselves.
“There were lots of people turning up, and I was just going to bed when I saw it had been destroyed,” Fanthorpe told BBC Radio Humberside. “It wasn’t just me that helped, this work is international prestige gifted to the city, and I couldn’t sit back and see nothing happen.”
He added: “Being a window cleaner, I had the equipment and the ladder, and I tried with just water at first. I was desperate not to destroy it, but I had to use white spirit to get it off.”
Fanthorpe was able to remove the white paint covering the mural; however, his efforts also affected the artwork.
“It’s a faded Banksy now, but it’s better than a silver blob,” Fanthorpe said. “There was a lot of talk on the One Hull Of A City Facebook group about the reputation of the city being dragged down, but it’s not right to tarnish the entire city because of the actions of a few. The amount of people who were talking about this, if I hadn’t gone down, someone else would.”
According to The Guardian, a Hull city councilwoman said the mural would be covered with acrylic sheeting on Monday, and later, a more permanent plan to preserve the art would be implemented.
Clearly, Banksy and his work are much more appreciated than the inconsiderate vandals who tried to destroy his art would have you believe. A true artist brings people together, and this collective effort by Fanthorpe and his neighbors to save the mural shows that Banksy is doing just that.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Pixabay, bones64