VANDALS have smeared paint over award-winning artwork in an up-and-coming area of Portsmouth.
My Dog Sighs was one of 20 street artists who transformed a dreary hoarding near the new Southsea Community Hub at the Portsmouth Street Art Festival earlier this year.
Thanks to everyone’s efforts, the project was crowned the Best Art/Community Project at The News We Can Do It Awards at The Kings Theatre this month.
But now the celebrations have been marred after a couple of men tried ruining the effort put into it last Friday.
My Dog Sighs, who lives in Southsea, said: ‘One of the artists went down there to have a look at the work, and was told by some neighbours that a couple of men who had been drinking had gone over some of it with a pot of paint.
‘It’s just one of those things that happens, though when I was told it did smart a bit.
‘But now it gives us a good chance to go back with some fresh ideas and create something new.
‘If the same piece of work stays up all the time then people will stop looking at it.’
The artists, which included Midge, Freakstatic, Leila, Rusty Sheriff and Ooberla, were given the opportunity by Portsmouth City Council to treat the space as a blank canvas.
My Dog Sighs has since sprayed a creative error message over the top of some of the paint to show passers-by that it’s due to be corrected.
Some of the team have begun making alterations.
Kevin Hudson, the council’s housing development manager, said he was confident about the situation being an isolated incident.
‘We’ve had great support from people for all of our community projects since we started the development of family housing and community facilities in Somers Town more than five years ago,’ he said.
‘We’ve had good feedback, from residents and visitors, about the fantastic art work at the site in Wellington Street, and we are sure that this is an isolated incident.’