A Dundee artist has said she is “upset and hurt” but not surprised her colourful mural celebrating the black community has been torn down and vandalised.
The Black Lives Matter Mural Trail by Dundee artist Sekai Machache, which featured portraits of black Dundonians wearing colourful face masks, was only installed on the hoarding near Slessor Gardens last month – however over the weekend it was destroyed.
She said: “I got a message on Instagram on Sunday night from someone letting me know what had happened, it wasn’t even someone I knew.
“Clearly people were not happy with this statement being made in their city and had to let people know.
“I am not surprised and I am not shocked, but I am upset and hurt by what has happened.
“This is not the first time this has happened to me as a black artist and as a black woman, I am used to people taking my work and anything relating to blackness like it is an affront to them rather than something beautiful.”
Seaki said that it was the second time her art had been targeted in as many years – in 2018 she did work with the No Mass Project and a brick was thrown through their window.
She added: “It is a shame because the vast majority will have looked at the trail and thought it is a nice piece of work showing and talking about some important issues and with the colour scheme I was trying to invoke colour and excitement and make people feel good and happy.
“But racists don’t like black people, they hate black people and don’t want to see our faces anywhere or see us succeeding at anything or having a moment of joy, for them this artwork is the worst thing in the world.”
Sekai added she has not even had a chance to go and see the mural at the Waterfront in person.
She said: “I was wondering how long it would take for the racists to do their work.
“If you are not experiencing racism on a daily basis you don’t see this as an inevitability, but it is such a regular occurrence I am not as shocked as I should be.
“I am glad I am not in Dundee right now – I am in Edinburgh – because if I was in the city when it happened it would have been worse to have it attacked at home.
“For this to happen during Black History Month, a month celebrating black people in this country, it seems like a step back but I am sure the majority of people in Dundee don’t want to be tarnished with this.”
A crowdfunder has now been set up to raise enough money to put the posters back up, with the aim of having them on display until the end of Black History Month.