Wildwood Park mural vandalized

Published: Jun. 26, 2020 at 10:41 PM EDT
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RADFORD, Va. (WDBJ) - A mural that was added to Radford’s Wildwood Park last fall was vandalized Thursday night after someone spray painted over artwork that took folks about a year to design.

“A lot of people I had interviewed before picking this spot were scared to come under the bridge,” said Brooke Love.

As part of a thesis project to help build community through art, Love chose the spot under a bridge at the park to make it more inviting. The space previously was home to graffiti that wasn’t as welcoming, so Love wanted to bring a mural here to brighten things up.

“A lot of hard work was put into it, but now we have to go back and do it again,” Love said.

A police report was filed early Friday morning after someone covered the masterpiece with phrases and eyes.

“The messages are great, but where they are placed, not so much,” Love said. “If art is their passion, hit me up and let’s get some work together, elsewhere.”

Artist Sterling Boyd spent countless hours working to depict Connelley’s Run, a historic property of the Armentrout family that has been passed down since the early 1930s.

“The beautiful part about all of this is we have folks who wanted to make a difference here and did and we have folks who are going to fix it,” said Mayor David Horton.

Already, people have started to scrub some of the spray paint off, but the mural will need to be retouched with paint again.

“My hope is folks respect this at a level that we don’t have this issue again and we’re going to take steps to make sure that it is not as easy for someone to be able to come down and spray paint or do those kinds of things,” Horton said.

Building community again through art, just as Love’s project was meant to do.

“Let’s work together and create art, not against each other,” Love said.

Copyright 2020 WDBJ. All rights reserved.

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