Brussels residents petition to keep lewd mural

Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:28pm EDT
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By Marilyn Haigh

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - An online petition to prevent the removal of an explicit mural in Brussels has gained thousands of signatures, highlighting a wave of graphic street art in the city known for its cartoon-inspired murals.

Painted last month by an anonymous artist in pointillist style, in black and white, the penis covers a two-storey wall on the side of a house. Shortly after its appearance, local council members voted in late September for it to be removed.

However, a petition started by residents of the Brussels district of Saint-Gilles who want it to stay has now won nearly 3,000 signatures.

"Everybody likes it, I think," said one Saint-Gilles resident interviewed by Reuters. "People pretend to be shocked but they like it. Why shouldn't they like it?"

The council said it recognized that the wall was ideal for street art, and will find an artist to fill the space after the penis is removed.

Other explicit murals in Brussels include depictions of intercourse, and a woman masturbating.

Another painting of an anus covers an advert for home appliance producer Zanussi, with the first letter and last two letters of the brand name covered. Graffiti of a birth, which was added in early October, is on the other side of the same building.

Darren, a Brussels resident who goes to a restaurant across the street from the mural portraying intercourse, likes the mural because it is unique.   Continued...

A sculpture is seen near an explicit graffiti painted on the side of a building in central Brussels, Belgium, October 11, 2016. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir