A graffiti vandal has defaced two new rooftop murals painted to promote street art in Croydon.

Your Local Guardian:

The two murals, painted on facing walls above Davis House in High Street, were damaged during the night by what appears to have been a single "tagger" with white and black spray paint.

The damage comes just weeks after both murals were painted by street artist Dotmasters, as part of an ongoing project led by the Rise Gallery to promote street art across the borough.

Anthony Spratt, who runs the Croydon Street Art blog, said the damage appeared to be the work of a Croydon tagger going by the name "TIC", part of the Kaos Crew, also thought to be involved in vandalising a number of murals in St George's Walk in February.

Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison, owner of the Rise Gallery, said: "I don't understand it. I think it's really unfair, very frustrating, and just makes it quite sad. They're the very people we're trying to support.

"Our door is always open. We should be one community all working towards one goal. It's not so much about the money - we really want to engage these people and make this a place for everyone to enjoy."

Mr Zuchowski-Morrison said he had paid about £1,000 for the murals to be painted, and would make every effort to get them cleaned up as soon as possible. 

Mr Spratt, a graphic designer who works in Davis House, said he felt "anger" when he arrived this morning to find the two murals had been tagged on.

He said: "[One of the murals] was only painted about a week and a half ago. They're trying to make street art for the community and brighten up the community in Croydon. This defaces it - it's vandalism."

One of the murals, a large scale depiction of a cartoon rag doll, was tagged over the character's face, increasing the difficulty of any potential clean up operation.

Mr Spratt said: "We know why they're doing it - for notoriety."

FROM FEBRUARY: Vandals destroy week-old Femme Fierce street art in Croydon

Tagging on the murals appeared to be a response to the recent decison to ban graffitti at the previously "legal" wall in St George's Walk, Mr Spratt said - a theory supported by Mr Zuchowski-Morrison.

Asked what he would say to the person who had defaced the murals, Mr Spratt appealed for them to "talk to us and have a dialogue" in order to raise the profile of graffiti.


Are you part of the Kaos Crew? Get in touch with Daniel O'Mahony on 020 8722 6388.