Dublin City Council set to remove two prominent murals

Áine O'Boyle

Dublin City Council have recently taken action to remove two prominent murals across the city. 

The widely recognised mural of David Attenborough on the gable wall of a house on South Circular Road and the mural named “Horseboy” located off Church Street, Dublin 7, are set to be removed over what the council has hailed as “unauthorised development”. 

The murals were made by a collective of artists known as Subset. The murals were erected after Subset obtained permission from the owners of the private property. The owners of the private property are now facing prosecution for failing to gain permission from the council first. 

With both of the murals, council inspectors deemed that they constituted that of developments that were not excempt from requiring planning permission from the council, resulting in enforcement notices under section 154 of the Planning and Developments Acts 2000 for the removal of the artwork. 

This has sparked much outrage among fans of Subset’s work, with people even going as far as to set up a petition condemning the order for removal in an effort to save the murals. 

The petition named “Save Our David Attenborough Mural” says: “The mural was created by subset as a tribute to David Attenborough – an important figure in documenting and demonstrating the value of our natural environment.

“At this crucial moment in history, when global warming and other aspects of human-induced climate change are threatening our very survival – attention needs to be drawn to those individuals and efforts who work to save our planet.

The page also notes that since the mural has gone up, there has been a total change in atmosphere in the area, saying that it has helped to stop vandalism, something of which previously plagued the street. 

It has also become a tourist hot-spot, featuring on many Instagram posts, and giving the impression of Dublin as being a vibrant and colourful city. 

From the perspective of Dublin City Council, the removal of the mural may be to serve as a precedent to discourage vandalism. They may wish to establish the fact that in order to put up a mural, you must first go through the appropriate channels, but from another perspective, it can be viewed as a just another kick in the teeth for those that value the arts and culture in Dublin, furthering only the gentrification of a city thay once valued its artists and looked after them. 

Áine O’Boyle 

Image Credit: WikiMedia