Volunteer struggles to repair vandalized Fredericton mural

·1 min read
This part of the mural, showing a person riding a horse, was defaced with graffiti. (Aniekan Etuhube/CBC - image credit)
This part of the mural, showing a person riding a horse, was defaced with graffiti. (Aniekan Etuhube/CBC - image credit)

A volunteer is trying to restore a major city mural that was vandalized with graffiti tags.

For the third time, spray painters have defaced the popular Valley Trail mural in Fredericton with graffiti. The incident happened on Canada Day weekend.

On the south-facing wall of the New Brunswick Exhibition horse barn, a group of Halifax-based artists painted a mural reflecting the history of New Brunswick.

The mural is a public art beautification project by the Fredericton Trails Coalition. It was installed in 2021 with the intention of improving the area's esthetics and increasing the community appeal of the trails in the neighbourhood.

"This was about a $25,000 mural," said Anne Wilkins, a volunteer with the Fredericton Trails Coalition. "It's really disconcerting and I'm a little bit discouraged, but we will correct it every time it happens."

Aniekan Etuhube/CBC
Aniekan Etuhube/CBC

Wilkins added that this was the worst tagging yet and she might not be able to fully restore some of the images.

"We are losing some images. Because I'm not an artist, we would have to pay the artists to come back and correct the images," she said.

Aniekan Etuhube/CBC
Aniekan Etuhube/CBC

Halifax-based Trackside Studios, which specializes in visual arts, was hired by the coalition to install the mural.

Michael Burt, the owner and lead artist, says their vision was to create art that will add to the culture and beauty of the city.

"I'm disappointed, you know, maybe a little angry. We were hoping this wouldn't happen, but sad to say that it is. It seems like they're just going to keep coming and coming. I mean, the goal was to try to stop that sort of thing. So I feel like we missed the mark there," he said.

Aniekan Etuhube/CBC
Aniekan Etuhube/CBC
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