Commissioned High School Mural Destroyed Within 24 Hours

3 December 2015 | 1:34 pm | Neil Griffiths

Just plain wrong.

A Melbourne high school mural has been destroyed within a day of it being completed following a two-month project, in which two men have been accused of painting out the entire design in grey paint.

Year ten art students at Coburg Senior High School had been commissioned by VicRoads and the local council to create the mural underneath the Bell St Bridge next to Merri Creek, but in just one day over 1000 hours of labour had been cruelly taken away from them.

Speaking to theMusic, art teacher Theodore Hartman claims they know who the culprits were because they were caught in the act.

"These are a couple of local punters who go around greying out people's tags, graffiti," Hartman explained.

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"…But the problem this time was we had authorisation by VicRoads and our local council to execute the design."

Mural near completion. 

After the mural had been painted over.

To make matters more frustrating, Hartman claims the men knew about the mural while it was in progress, but waited until it was completed for them to paint over it.

"They didn't lodge a complaint, they didn't try to block out part of it," he said. 

"…The guys had come through and obliterated it with a grey roller and 45 metres of paint. That would have been two hours on the job."

Before the students commenced work.

Mural in progress.

In an effort to hit back at the culprits after the work was destroyed, a sausage dog was painted over the entire wall to help lift the spirits of the students who were left disappointed from the aftermath.

"We had to overwrite what they had done, so we just put a really long wiener dog to try and keep it positive, light-hearted," Hartman said.

"They were making their mark," he said of the students.

"They’re working on a great big project…it’s a nice experience for a 15-year-old to do and in the end, to have it taken off them right when they’re going into holidays and they didn't even get a chance to photograph it or stand back and look at their work...that's the real tragedy."

Hartman said the school does plan to create a new mural in the new year, though a design has not yet been decided. 

Maintaining a positive attitude.