Vandalism can’t keep student artists’ spirits down

For several months the Grade 8 students at Earl Haig Public School have been communicating with the director of the Bell Box Mural Project, Michael Cavanaugh. The result is the murals on the Bell utility boxes on Hillingdon Avenue.

In the first week of June the Grade 8 class and Mr. Cavanaugh came together to create a theme and paint the Bell boxes on Hillingdon Avenue. We worked together for two days painting a beautiful butterfly theme.

A Bell utility box painted by students at Earl Haig Public School is shown before, left, after a mural was painted, centre, and post-vandalism, far right. PHOTOS: Submitted
A Bell utility box painted by students at Earl Haig Public School is shown before, left, after a mural was painted, centre, and post-vandalism, far right.
PHOTOS: Submitted

Unfortunately graffiti was sprayed on top of the monarch butterfly painted by Mr. Cavanaugh. After eight months of planning work and two days of difficult painting, our mural lived to see only five days.

We were overwhelmed with anger and sadness at the sight of the vandalized work. We worked very hard on the mural, and it was ruined in a week’s time.

Although the mural was vandalized, we hope people will still be able to see the beauty of it and forgive the vandals, just as we have.

The art still brought joy and pride to the school. We are very proud of ourselves for completing it.

We are well aware this is a common occurrence across many urban areas, but we hope that the vandals will refrain from such actions in the future.

Mr. Cavanaugh was kind enough to have Bell eliminate the tag and have the boxes clear-coated, preventing further vandalism.

After the graffiti was removed, the mural needed to be restored. The great artists of grade 8 did the touch-ups.

Thanks to Mr. Cavanaugh, who was fantastic to work with, and helped us throughout all of our issues.


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