Updated 7:30PM (3.31.17)
A local piece from the mysterious Brit street artist Banksy has been defaced yet again. “Girl With Umbrella,” located on the corner of N. Rampart and Kerelec, has been tagged by other graffiti artists over the years, but the most recent incident is by far the worst, with the street art stencil now completely obscured.
The defacing was first noticed by Marigny residents on Wednesday (3.29), with the art covered entirely with a black tar-like paint. On Thursday morning, a note was written atop the paint, which read, “WTF is wrong with you? Why would you paint over a Bansky?! Stupid Asshats.” A neighborhood resident allegedly found black tar just across the street from the art piece in front of one of the houses. The sidewalk koi fish, painted by San Francisco (and sometimes NOLA)-based artist Jeremy Novy, appear untouched.
The street art stencil first appeared during Banksy’s stint in New Orleans in 2008, before the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Prior to this week’s offense, the most recent defacing occurred on the last day of 2013. The red paint used to cover over the art work was later cleaned. The Jeremy Novy-painted koi fish on the sidewalk below were also destroyed during that incident.
Just a few months later, Marigny residents grew concerned when an unidentified quartet of men attempted to move the piece from its location, before fleeing the scene.
“Girl With Umbrella” is one of the last remaining pieces painted by Banksy during his 2008 residency. Several of the pieces were covered over by vigilante graffiti combatant The Gray Ghost (aka Fred Radtke).
UPDATE 7:30PM Girl with Umbrella Cleaned of Black Tar Paint
It seems that the graffiti artists were not successful in completely defacing the last of Banksy’s remaining works in New Orleans. As of 7:30PM, the black tar paint was mostly cleaned off. The plexiglass covering had only the faintest trace of paint, and the people who defaced the street art were only able to pour a small amount of the paint under the plexi covering. Said author John Couret, “Who would do this? It’s the last remaining one in the city.” Couret was on scene all day with his family to remove the paint, alongside a team of neighborhood volunteers.
As the below photos show, what remains of the paint is the small bit poured at the top, as well as a puddle on the ground of what appears to be spilt paint as well as the foot prints of who we assume to be the graffiti artists.
Original photos courtesy of Blake Kunkel