'Gone beyond a joke': Luke Kelly statue vandalised for fourth time

A statue of the late musician Luke Kelly has been defaced for the fourth time in the past year since it was erected.
'Gone beyond a joke': Luke Kelly statue vandalised for fourth time

A statue of the late musician Luke Kelly has been defaced for the fourth time in the past year since it was erected.

The statue, one of two placed in Dublin just over a year ago, was designed by artist Vera Klute, and on Sunday night was sprayed with red paint in the shape of glasses. The red paint was also dubbed into the hair of the statue.

Last month, the statue was covered with black paint, around it’s eyes and the remainder of the face.

Former Dublin Lord Mayor and Independent councillor for Dublin Central, Christy Burke, who lives close-by said the vandalism is “gone beyond a joke”.

I hope the family ask to have the statue moved. I’m fearful that the next thing that will happen is that the statue will be smashed.

“It’s just terrible to think that Luke, who was a man of the people, is having a fitting tribute to him wrecked in such a vile way. Luke deserves to be left alone.

“The person or persons who are carrying out these heinous acts don’t seem to realise, or care about the upset this is causing to his family and locals here or for that matter, how much it is costing to have it cleaned up because of this.

“It’s costing the taxpayer in the long run who is having to fork out for these mindless acts of vandalism every time Dublin City Council have to bring in a specialised cleaning company.

“I just can’t come to terms with the fact that in the middle of a national emergency because of the Covid-19 pandemic people would want to do a thing like this - it’s beyond comprehension.”

Officers are already examining CCTV images from cameras located to the Luke Kelly park close to where the Dubliners singer grew up on Sheriff St in Dublin’s north inner city.

It is hoped that the stone and restoration company involved in the other clean-ups on behalf of Dublin City Council will be successful in removing the graffiti.

Sunglasses were painted onto the statue face on the three previous occasions.

The statue was unveiled on the 35th anniversary of the 43-year-old singer’s death by President Michael D Higgins in January last year.

The work was commissioned by Dublin City Council in 2014 when Cllr Burke was elected as Mayor. The statue which also cost €80,000 is a 1.8-metre-high marble bust, with copper wire used for Kelly's trademark beard.

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